Our new congregation just recently completed a backpack supply drive for CEAP, Anoka County’s community action agency. Last year CEAP collected over 3,000 backpacks with school supplies for children in Anoka County.
I’m proud of our congregation for donating 20 backpacks. I somewhat arbitrarily set this goal for us. I trusted the generosity of the people in our new church. And they came through. We collected 12 backpacks from the children of Vacation Bible School and then the rest came at our event last Wednesday at our proposed new worship space.
Who says a new church can’t do mission in the community?
I’m especially proud of my daughter, Hannah, and her relentless determination in participating in the backpack ministry. Let me brag on her a bit.
The day after I announced the backpack ministry she pleaded with me to go to Target to purchase the backpacks. “We don’t have to do this immediately,” I told her, “The backpack drive doesn’t end for a while.” But she wasn’t deterred. We soon went to Target and purchased not one backpack, but two.
At last Wednesday’s gathering at our proposed new worship space Hannah became interested again in the backpack supply ministry. She heard me say that someone needed to go out and purchase three backpacks (the money for those three backpacks had already been donated) and go through the existing backpacks to ensure that each one had all the supplies that are needed. She volunteered to do that.
So yesterday afternoon she and I finished the backpacks. Hannah went through all of the backpacks to do an inventory of what supplies were lacking. Then we went to Target to purchase the three new backpacks and buy the extra supplies we needed. Then she packed the three new backpacks and added the supplies to the backpacks that needed them.
That was a three hour project. She did it all—with her relentless focus and without complaint. In fact she was dragging me along to finish the project. I’ll admit it—I was a bit tired from leading worship three times yesterday morning and early afternoon—so my enthusiasm was lacking a bit.
So today a proud father gives thanks for the determination of his daughter in sharing backpacks with children who need them. Way to go, Hannah!