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Last updated: March 28. 2014 9:45AM - 411 Views
By Kevin Boozer kboozer@civitasmedia.com



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NEWBERRY — For the sixth year, community members and Lutherans in the Heartland Conference will participate in Operation Inasmuch.


Inspired by the Gospel of Matthew, “In as much as you do it for the least of these, you do it for me,” the day of service has four mission priorities in South Carolina: deepening discipleship, engaging community, assisting in public education and tackling issues of poverty.


The community service day, April 5, is statewide and is intended to encourage Lutherans of all ages to engage in service to others.


“This spring’s Operation Inasmuch promises to be one of the biggest days for all Lutheran Church across South Carolina,” said the Rev. Jason Antley with Peak Springhill Lutheran Parish, the event coordinator.


Projects this year include working on a storage room with the Wounded Warrior Project facility in Prosperity, major home renovations at a house in Silverstreet, doing yard work and repairing a fence at Heritage at Lowman, painting and planting flowers at south side residential, a traveling hymn sing to area nursing homes, trash pick-up along roadsides and more.


Antley said thus far around 15 churches have signed up for projects and/or given donations.


The ministry also is raising funds for projects and hopes to raise several thousand dollars to go toward construction expenses and other outreach ministries.


Last year OIAM raised nearly $19,000 for outreach ministries including matching funds from Thrivent Financial. This year matching funds are a possibility, as well.


Check donations to OIAM projects should be made payable to The Heartland Conference with “2014 OIAM Projects” in the subject line and be sent to Chris Prince, Heartland Conference Treasurer, 1853 Little Egypt Road, Whitmire, SC 29178.


Monetary donations for the Newberry Free Medical Clinic should be made to the Heartland Conference and sent to Chris Prince at that address. Place “2014 OIAM fundraiser” in the subject line of the check.


Transformative power of serving others


Part of OIAM is a yard sale on May 3 to benefit the Newberry Free Medical Clinic and Women on a Mission.


The yard sale will be at Tractor Supply from 7 a.m. until.


Donations for the sale, either of quality items to be sold or monetary donations, are needed.


Volunteers are welcome to participate in the April 5 event, which is open to anyone who desires to serve his or her neighbor through this outreach.


“There is something about serving the needs of others that transforms how we look at everything around us. Lutherans across South Carolina have an opportunity on April 5 to collectively demonstrate the love of Christ through public acts of service for those in their community,” said the Rev. Herman Yoos, bishop of South Carolina Synod of the ELCA.


Project leaders are co-ordinating with Antley to develop site teams and plan projects.


People looking for a group to join, or a project to help with, should contact Antley at 803-31-931 or jasonantley@earthlink.net.


May 18 at the spring gathering for the Heartland Conference, OIAM participants will share stories of how the outreach impacted the community and the outreach teams.


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