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The Department of Social Ministries serves the Diocese by inspiring and equipping church members to be faithful stewards of their God-given gifts of time, talent, and treasure to:

· Love their neighbor as Jesus first loved us (John 15:12).
·  Make Christian disciples of all people (Matthew 28:19-20).

Department of Social Ministries Report to Diocesan Council—May 26, 2016

Social Ministries Communication & Awareness and Volunteer Development

next steps

We train, at no cost, members of Christian congregations to organize and operate self-sustaining Next Step Program Affiliates in their community (see  Affiliates help their neighbors in poverty make lasting, positive changes in their lives emotionally, physically, and spiritually. Next Steps is a Christ-centered program that offers people in poverty a hand-up, rather than a hand-out.    

•    Next Steps of Johns Island (NSJI) Affiliate NSJI has been operating on Mondays for 13 months to mentor to people in poverty on Johns and Wadmalaw Islands and the Red Top Area as they make positive changes in their lives.  NSJI operates in Walton Hall at 3673-A Maybank Highway of our Host Cooperative Church—St. John's Parish Church.  
•    Next Steps of Barnabas Ministries (NSBM) Affiliate NSBM opened on Friday April 8, 2016 to mentor to people in poverty in the Charleston peninsula as they make positive changes in their lives.  NSBM operates in the Community Center at 403 King Street of our Host Cooperative Church—St. Matthew's Lutheran Church.  
•    Next Steps of……. We are working with Christian congregations in Mt. Pleasant, James Island, West Ashley, North Charleston, and Summerville to explore when they would like to launch a Next Step Program to serve people in poverty in their communities. Tonight, we train 10 members of East Bridge Presbyterian Church who think they might like to serve as the
Host Cooperative Church in Mt. Pleasant.

Ministry Money for Social Ministries Events

We provide seed money to local churches and ministries to inspire people to donate their time, talent, and treasure to ministry and mission domestically and internationally.  Since our last report, we provided funds to (a) Charleston Port & Seafarers’ Society Waterfront Olympics fundraiser, (b) NSBM for their sidewalk sandwich sign at St. Matthew’s and (c) St. Helena’s to purchase t-shirts to promote their June 12-16, 2016 Youth Mission Trip to Aliquippa, PA.

South Carolina Christian Action Council (SCCAC)  during its April 21, 2016 Board meeting approved two statements (1) On Closing the Healthcare Coverage Gap and (2) On Reducing Gun Violence. It uses such statements in the public arena when speaking with or teaching a congregation, participating in rallies, testifying in a legislative committee, letter writing, and all advocacy efforts.

Charleston Area Justice Ministry (CAJM) During its Nehemiah Action Assembly on April 18, 2016, CAJM had over 2,000 people of faith in attendance. The main focus was racial discrimination in policing practices. Mayor John Tecklenberg was open to reducing racial discrimination, but was unwilling to agree that there were racial disparities and discrimination in the public contact stops. He agree that the city will do an audit of the police policies and practices.  

Submitted by Deacon Ed Dyckman, Chair;  843-367-5647


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