Members of the Presbyterian United Church of Christ gave themselves a challenge: Increased their giving for local needs and become more personally involved in the mission effort.
According to Kent Schwiesow, Mission Commission chair, they're meeting their challenge of increasing mission giving by $10,000.
"We know that giving for missions requires dollars," he said. "We targeted eight local groups or projects that we felt needed our help."
Some, like the Christian Needs Center and Life Skills Training Center, already received support, but the Mission Commission looked to increase those dollars.
Six others, Senior Helpmate Program, Hospice of Siouxland, Mission Honduras, Habitat for Humanity, Gospel Mission-Sioux City and Domestic Abuse/Violence Council, were added to the list of mission opportunities for the congregation.
"We looked at these organizations and felt we needed to be contributing to them," Schwiesow said.
A three-part fund drive was set up. The first part was to ask for donations from the members of the congregation. The second part was to declare the third Sunday of the month as Missions Sunday.
"We emphasized a certain mission each month, and have a guest speaker present information to the congregation about it," Schwiesow noted. "Then we also take up a collection for it."
The third part of their mission effort will be this Sunday, June 3, with the Christ Missions Benefit Auction held at the Plymouth County Historical Museum, 335 First Ave. S.W. in Le Mars. starting a 1 p.m. This is the first time the congregation has held such an auction.
Lunch featuring a chili dog luncheon will be served starting at 11:30 a.m., for a free will offering. "All our food has been donated," Schwiesow noted.
Likewise, long list of auction items.
Members and friends were asked to donate good auction items. "No white elephants here," said Schwiesow.
"We also asked them to donate personal services," he said. "We've got a pie a month for 12 months, homemade cookies and breads, a dessert each month for 12 months. They really came through."
Thirdly, they asked local businesses for donations of items and services.
"They came through for us with flying colors," he said.
And when all is said and done, the congregation hopes that more than $10,000 in new money will be available to help the local organizations they have targeted for support.