Do your little bit of good where you are; it's those little bits of good put together that overwhelm the world. — Desmond Tutu
This first year of ministry at Saint Michael has flown by as I have been introduced to our wonderful people and the beautiful ministries of this church! This quote from Desmond Tutu could have been written with you in mind. The Mission and Outreach ministry of Saint Michael is clearly a dynamic and fast-growing one thanks to the extraordinary support of our congregation, led by the Mission and Outreach Committee. I wondered if you realized how all your “little bits of good” look when put together over the year. I, therefore, wanted to share with you a snapshot of the work you have accomplished in Dallas and beyond.
As we move to the future, I am thankful to our leadership for adding to our staff in this work with you. I am delighted to introduce the newest member of the M&O team, Kirstin Ivy-Waybourn. She comes to us with years of experience in church ministry, as well as five years spent teaching in middle school. Additionally, she has experience as a director of development for an anti-trafficking nonprofit organization in North Dallas.
AUSTIN STREET CENTER
Every day, thousands of men and women in Dallas find themselves without a home and with nowhere to turn. At Austin Street Center, clients are not only provided emergency housing, but much-needed hope for a plan and a path forward. Serving as one of Dallas’ largest homeless shelters for more than three decades, Austin Street Center and its team of dedicated servant leaders transform lives with innovative programs and individualized plans that help them home through permanent housing solutions. Once per month, a Saint Michael cooking team prepares, and another team serves, a hot dinner for 400 homeless men and women at the shelter.
- 12+ members cook a complete dinner of meatloaf, mashed potatoes, green beans and dessert.
- 10+ members serve and visit with the 400 guests.
- In 2022, teams cooked and served 4,050 meals.
- In July 2022 20+ youth packed 1,000 lunches that were served opening week at the new center.
BACHMAN LAKE TOGETHER
The mission of Bachman Lake Together is to unite the Bachman Lake community to fully prepare children for kindergarten—academically, socially, and emotionally—so they can thrive in school and in life. The BLT vision is to have every child in Bachman Lake ready for kindergarten by 2028. BLT has also become a major voice for the revitalization of the Bachman Lake community.
- Partnership created through 75th Anniversary events.
- 20+ volunteers helped with back-to-school event leading art projects for 125 children of all ages.
- The Men of Saint Michael have been assisting with property repairs and maintenance.
STEPHEN C. FOSTER ELEMENTARY SCHOOL
Foster Elementary serves children from PreK3–6th grade, almost all of whom live in homes where English is a second language, and most of whom are impacted by the effects of poverty. Foster’s motto is “We grow every scholar. Every way. Every day.” Foster believes in developing responsible, productive, and creative leaders of tomorrow by delivering high-quality educational and social-emotional experiences that embrace our core values of community, commitment, creativity, respect and service.
In August 2022, Saint Michael entered into a community partnership with Foster and United to Learn, funded in part by the All Angels Foundation. Our volunteers are tutoring children in English and Math, as well as preparing them to meet their STAAR goals. We have also helped to create a Foster Care Closet that provides basic food, clothing, and toiletries to students and families in need. We have the opportunity to support our Foster friends through sponsoring and chaperoning field trips, staffing an after-school soccer clinic, and hosting the 1st Annual Youth Mission Week Foster Day Camp. Highlights from 2022 include:
- Provided tutors to help in English and Math.
- Volunteers created a canned food sculpture as part of the Annual Stewardship Campaign—the cans and additional pallets of food were then delivered by a team of young adults and youth to the Foster Care Closet.
- Stocked the Foster Care Closet with thousands of items including food, school uniforms, warm clothing and toiletries.
- Provided over 670 Christmas Craft Kits to the students and over 260 Christmas gifts to students.
JUBILEE PARK AND COMMUNITY CENTER
Saint Michael is the founder and long-time sustainer of Jubilee Park and Community Center. Its mission is to be a catalyst for community renewal and enrichment in the Jubilee Park Neighborhood, a 62-block area in Southeast Dallas. Saint Michael’s parishioners contribute countless hours of time, energy, and money to the wide array of opportunities at Jubilee Park. These opportunities include Jubilee’s summer camp programs, a Mother/Daughter Tea, the Thanksgiving and Christmas Senior Luncheons, and the I Believe in Angels Christmas event. Highlights include:
- Celebrated Thanksgiving with 200 Jubilee seniors.
- Provided Christmas luncheon and gift bags for 200 Jubilee seniors.
- I Believe in Angels provided beautifully wrapped Christmas gifts and gift cards for 350 children and teens.
- Saint Michael staff decorated 1000+ Christmas cookies for Jubilee families.
- Volunteers helped to stock and organize the Jubilee food pantry.
- Volunteers helped to lead art and other activities for Jubilee youth summer camp serving 100+ kids.
NORTH DALLAS SHARED MINISTRIES
North Dallas Shared Ministries is an interfaith community partnership providing emergency assistance to families in North and West Dallas. The services include food, clothing, medical and dental services, and housing assistance.
- SMAA volunteers provided school supplies to 3,527 children and uniforms to 2,638 children.
- SMAA collected 450 bags of food during the Summer Food Drive and 300 bags of food during the Advent Food Drive.
Project Moses is a mission founded by parishioners to highlight the truths of human trafficking and share the Light of Christ with its survivors. To support the mission, three areas of concentration have been established: formation/education, advocacy, and outreach. Highlights included:
- Provided bus tours to parishioners and guests to highlight the truths about human trafficking in Dallas.
- Provides boxed dinners monthly to 30 survivors served by New Friends New Life.
- Collects snack food, new socks, and toiletry items for trafficking survivors.
- Monthly meetings to support their mission.
- Provides scholarships and other funding for education and other aid to human trafficking survivors in Dallas.
ST. PHILIP'S SCHOOL AND COMMUNITY CENTER
Saint Michael partners with St. Philip's School and Community Center, an organization founded as a ministry of the Episcopal Diocese of Dallas. The mission of St. Philip’s is to provide unparalleled education and compatible community services through a faith-based experience, with an emphasis on serving low and moderate-income families.
- Saint Michael volunteers serve at Aunt Bette’s Food Pantry—a well-stocked client-choice pantry open 5 days per week.
- Saint Michael took part in the annual coat drive this year led by SMES.
VNA MEALS ON WHEELS
VNA Meals on Wheels provides nutritious, hot, home-delivered meals five days a week to those who, due to illness, advanced age or disability, are unable to obtain or prepare their own meals. VNA serves the hidden hungry—homebound, aging and unable to access resources like food pantries and grocery stores. The purpose of VNA Meals on Wheels is to nourish the whole person.
- 170 SMAA volunteers cover 189 routes per month.
- Our delivery team provided over 24,800 meals to Dallas seniors.
Amistad’s mission is to manifest Christ’s love for the poor by helping Bolivian children and families in need. Amistad provides nurturing Christian family environments for vulnerable Bolivian children to grow to independent adulthood and to strengthen families in crisis to establish loving and stable homes. Saint Michael supports Amistad by sponsoring Villa Esperanza, a home for nine children, their Mia and Tia. We are prayer partners with the children throughout their lives, and we send volunteers to meet and spend time with the children.
- Restarting mission trips for adult and youth in 2023.
- 14-member youth team preparing to travel to Amistad in June 2023.
This mission team provided fluoride treatments to hundreds of children, eyeglasses to seniors and works on multiple construction projects. The team also provided a Bible School to approximately 170 students at Espiritu Santos school in Tela and to over 280 students in 4 local barrios.
- 18-member team traveled to Tela in February 2023—the first trip post-Covid.
Honduras Threads supports embroidery cooperatives in rural Honduran villages to enable women to earn money to help themselves and their families. SMAA supports Honduras Threads by helping to market and sell hand-embroidered items.
- In October held the 20th Anniversary Gala where 20 local artists paired with the Honduran craftswomen to create in tandem 20 art pieces and 100+ pillows that were sold at the gala.
- Saint Michael hosted a Pop-Up Sale for our parish in December.
CHILDREN & YOUTH OUTREACH
Youth Mission Week 2022
31 youth served over 1,000 service hours at Jubilee (assisted Summer Camp), NDSM (packed bags and organized clothes), and VNA Meals on Wheels (delivered 140 meals and wrapped items for the 500 Holiday gift bags).
NDSM Back-to-School Events
- 4 Saint Michael youth spent 80 hours each as they organized and led dozens of volunteers in the back-to-school distribution of uniforms and supplies.
- 3,527 children received school supplies.
- 2,638 children received school uniforms.
Youth prepared 500 breakfast bags and baked 800 cookies for 400 homeless men and women.
Veteran’s Day Celebration
Youth packed 50 backpacks for homeless veterans.
Advent Festival Outreach Project
Children and youth prepared 670 Christmas craft kits for the children at Foster Elementary School.
2022 HEART OF GIVING
Heart of Giving offers a thoughtful, alternative way to spread the spirit of the season. In 2022, a new elegant Heart of Giving card was created in what may be a first step to creating a whole range of cards that will benefit our Mission and Outreach efforts. This year’s recipients included Bachman Lake Together, Jubilee Park and Community Center and Aunt Bette’s Pantry at St. Philip’s School and Community Center. Donations totaled $30,900.74.
2022 CHRISTMAS OFFERING
Each year at Saint Michael and All Angels Episcopal Church, as part of our Christmas celebrations, we have a lovely tradition of giving 100% of our undesignated offerings on Christmas Eve and Christmas Day to outreach projects supported by our parish. This year, the Mission and Outreach Committee chose to focus on the theme of children and youth as we remembered the story of the birth of Baby Jesus in a Bethlehem stable over 2,000 years ago.
Saint Michael, therefore, supported children near and far through the following ministries: Stephen C. Foster Elementary School Community Partnership; The Children’s Bereavement Center of South Texas in partnership with St. Philip’s Episcopal Church in Uvalde, Texas, and the Holy Spirit Episcopal School Scholarship Fund, Tela, Honduras. The total collection in 2022 was $48,000.
**This article was written by the Rev. Robin Hinkle and was featured in the 2023 Summer Archangel.