Jesus set the example for those who follow him as to how they are to live in the world. As we examine the life of Jesus, it becomes clear Jesus calls us to lives of service and self-giving love. Having witnessed the love of Christ, the author of 1 John says, “Beloved, let us love one another, because love is from God; everyone who loves is born of God … God’s love was revealed among us in this way: God sent his only Son into the world so that we might live through him” (1 John 4:7-9). When we allow God’s Spirit to flow through us to be conduits of God’s love, not only is it a form of worship, but through our service God blesses others. Below you will find ways we seek to serve people in our community.
Each summer, our 6th – 12th graders spend a week with Ozark Mission Project (OMP). OMP is an Arkansas based mission that aims to organize youth and community groups to engage in Arkansas communities by serving individuals and families, our neighbors, who are in need of minor construction and yard work. In addition to the physical service projects, OMP strives to meet social and emotional needs by spending part of our time visiting, sharing lunch and, if the neighbor so chooses, a devotional. Youth generally travel to other Arkansas communities and stay at a host church while doing service projects throughout the week. It is a wonderful opportunity for youth to learn new skills and grow spiritually.
Each summer, our 4th & 5th graders spend a few days with Ozark Mission Project 101. OMP 101 helps young people learn about serving others, & they have fun while doing it. OMP 101 participants experience the basic elements of an OMP mission week. Youth learn tool safety and construction skills and use these skills to complete minor projects for community members. Youth also hear from a variety of local nonprofit partners and brainstorm ways to make a difference in their own communities.
Asbury is dedicated to the mission of eradicating childhood hunger. Arkansas ranks among the top 5 states in America in which children suffer from food insecurity. Asbury is participating in the Methodist Conference’s 200,000 Reasons to Fight Childhood Hunger Campaign by establishing the Asbury Food Pantry. You can help by donating non-perishible food monthly in designated receptacles in the Narthex and Wilson Activity Center.
The pantry is open on the 2nd and 4th Tuesday of each month, from 11 am- 1 pm.
Every 4th Sunday of even numbered months, Asbury sends 10-15 volunteers to Quapaw Quarter United Methodist Church to help prepare and serve a hot meal to the homeless of Little Rock. It is an opportunity to help meet the physical as well as social needs of our community at a very basic level.
The prison ministry is an outreach project to residents of the Central Arkansas Community Correction Center, a facility for non-violent, first time offenders. The first and fourth Sundays of each month volunteers from Asbury UMC and Pulaski Heights UMC provide the residents with a Bible lesson. Clothing is purchased for residents upon their release and Christmas presents are provided for the children of the residents. Asbury’s prison band plays for the residents on the 4th Sunday of the month. This ministry provides volunteers with an opportunity to encourage and help residents learn about Jesus Christ, often for the first time, and to help change lives.
United Methodist Women is a community of women whose purpose is to know God and experience freedom as whole persons through Jesus Christ. It is a group that participates in local and global ministries such as Stew Pot, Flood Buckets, Camp Aldersgate, Rice Depot, etc. Recent projects have included collecting school supplies for delivery at the Sager Brown Center in Louisiana, as well as food collection for the 200,000 Reasons project, which is the United Methodists’ initiative to fight childhood hunger in Arkansas. There are three UMW circles that meet at Asbury at various times for missions as well as fun and fellowship (Mary, Rebekah, and Summer).
Throughout the year, we participate in a number of projects. Depending on the time of the year, you will hear about a variety of service projects happening within the church. Here is a sampling of a few:
Be on the look out for other service opportunities which arise as we continue to discern the Spirit’s movement in our community.