Rio Grande Valley ministry bridges education gap
by Guest author on August 14, 2018 in hunger offering
By Jaclyn Bonner and Abby Hopkins
Education is a valued process of growth and development in pivotal years of one’s life, yet it is not always accessible. As a new school year begins, many are unable to afford the costs of learning.
However, a Texas Baptist Hunger Offering ministry in Hidalgo County unites the educated and the uneducated in their community by service and sacrifice to assist the literacy needs of refugees and immigrants.
The U.S. Census Bureau found that Hidalgo County has one of the highest concentrated poverty rates in the country. High population rates, coupled with high poverty rates, have created a need for educational support as the uneducated, illiterate, and non-English speaking Latino and refugee populations cannot afford educational resources or classes.
"I've seen God at work in an entire community because of this ministry," said Diann Berry, ministry leader. “And by community, I mean various communities throughout the entire Rio Grande Valley region."
The Rio Grande Valley Literacy Center offers all levels of ESL (English as a Second Language) and GED (General Education Development) test preparation classes, in both English and Spanish, serving up to 250 students in a semester.
"Some of our students have worked hard to study, to gain some knowledge, to become more employable, and do something about the cycle of poverty they are caught up in," Diann said....
Bastrop food pantry models dependence on Lord’s provision
by Guest Author on August 7, 2018 in hunger offering
By Abby Hopkins
“Mom, we have a turkey for Thanksgiving!”
A young boy exclaimed this and looked at his mother in awe as he discovered his family would receive a turkey from ABC Primera Baptist Church Food Pantry.
Erika Guerrero, Primera’s missions chairperson, was able to hand the turkey to this family on her first day volunteering. Since then, she has joined the work and watched as God has provided turkeys every Thanksgiving, serving as a reminder of the purpose of the food pantry.
ABC Primera is a ministry that seeks to alleviate hunger by feeding the elderly, single parents, homeless, and ill in Bastrop and models a dependence on God for every need. The ministry is supported through the Texas Baptist Hunger Offering.
“We always have enough to pay; it always works out,” said Primera Pastor of Harold Welch. “We see that’s the hand of God.&rdquo...
Hunger Offering cultivates crops, community, church in Democratic Republic of the Congo
by Guest Author on July 17, 2018 in hunger offering
By Jaclyn R. Bonner
In a country where severe food insecurity increased by 30 percent last year, affecting 7.7 million people, imagine reducing chronic malnutrition among the most vulnerable -- pregnant women, children under 5 years old, and the elderly -- and creating food security for rural communities in one of the world’s least developed countries.*
These solutions do not come easily. Problems are complex in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC). It is the second largest country in Africa and ranked seventh on the 2017 Fragile States Index.* Despite the nation’s instability and broken structures, the local church and leaders in the region have a vision for their people.
Deep in the heart of fertile Eastern DRC, 430 churches from three provinces are coming together to bolster a sustainable farming endeavor -- permaculture. Permaculture is an agricultural practice designed to break the cycle of poverty by diversifying crops, increasing control over production, and generating more income. ...
Transformation in West Dallas: Hunger Offering gifts feed the hungry, promote holistic change
by Guest Author on June 22, 2018 in hunger offering
By Jaclyn Bonner
The traditional American narrative boasts that anyone can make it if he or she works hard. But the social systems and economic stratum one is born into can often exclude a person from having an opportunity to attain the “American dream.”
West Dallas denizens face a challenging situation. Generational poverty is commonplace in the 11 square miles of Zip code 75212. “More than one of every three families lives below the federal poverty level,” reports Brother Bill’s Helping Hand, a Texas Baptist Hunger Offering ministry that has worked in the community for 75 years.
Unemployment in West Dallas is at 10.5 percent, double the Texas unemployment rate, and 45 percent of West Dallas households earn less than $25,000 annually. More than half of West Dallas adults did not complete high school. The average pre-K child has a vocabulary of 1,500 to 2,000 words, compared to the 5,000 to 7,000-word vocabulary of children living in more affluent Dallas neighborhoods.
Moreover, a health crisis, job loss, and/or family tragedy can drastically change a household’s economic status, creating food insecurity and leading directly to poverty.
In 2015, Elaine Rodriguez* took a medical leave of absence from her work. Dealing with health complications and less income, Elaine and her husband, Jacob*, members of Bill Harrod Memorial Baptist Church, had difficulty putting food on the table....
Hunger separates families, Hunger Offering keeps them together
by Guest Author on June 4, 2018 in hunger offering
By Jaclyn Bonner
My late grandmother, Edna Wood Bonner, grew up during the Great Depression. She sought to emulate the strength and selflessness she saw modeled by her own mother, Maggie Wood, who became a single parent of seven shortly after my grandmother and her twin brother were born.
It does not require statistics from the 1930s to understand the difficulties Maggie faced. She labored under the hot sun daily as a cotton picker, but this did not provide an income adequate to raise two sets of twins and three other daughters alone.
Like many mothers who desire the best for their children, Maggie made the difficult decision to place her children in institutionalized care. In 1932, at the age of eight, Edna and her twin brother were sent to the local orphanage, joining their siblings and other children whose parents were deceased or unable to care for their primary needs.
While the current economic situation of our nation does not rival that of the Great Depression, hunger is still hurting families today.
Feeding Texas reports that a study released by the United States Department of Agriculture found that 1.4 million Texas households were food insecure from 2014-2016. One in seven families in our state, 14.3 percent of households, are unable to put food on the table every night.
Hunger in Texas is higher than the national average*, but it is only a microcosm of the pervasiveness and severity of global hunger. The World Food Programme announced that 815 million people, one in nine, go to bed hungry every night. One in three people in the world are malnourished....
“Greeted with hope”: North Texas ministry empowers, serves mothers
by Guest Author on April 30, 2018 in hunger offering
By Abby Hopkins
In 2017, 123 young women considering abortion came to a ministry in Decatur. After receiving loving assistance from Wise Choices Pregnancy Care Center, 103 of these “abortion-minded” women chose life, and the Texas Baptist Hunger Offering is playing a role in serving these new families.
“These girls are absolutely heroes. Choosing to love the child, even when it’s hard – it’s what motherhood is all about,” said Connie Wyatt, CEO of Wise Choices.
Wise Choices is a Texas Baptist Hunger Offering ministry that seeks to empower families throughout a woman’s pregnancy and for the first year of the baby’s life by giving hope.
“We meet them where they are. When they make the choice for life, they’re not in it alone,” Wyatt said...
Bless This Meal: A Biblical Perspective
by Ali Corona on April 16, 2018 in clc
By Ali Corona
He may have felt insignificant -- a young boy walking home with a basket of lunch for his family -- five small loaves and two fish.
With a glance toward heaven and a heartfelt prayer, Jesus multiplied a few parcels into a lavish feast for a crowd that was hungry for spiritual and physical nourishment.
All four gospels recount this important moment in history. The sight of the unseen Kingdom colliding with the world must have made a deep impression on each of their hearts and minds.
Today, an estimated 795 million people around the world are undernourished. In Texas, 1 in 6 families are unable to put meals on their tables everyday. Hunger, both physical and spiritual, is devastating...
North Texas Ministry Provides Home, Healing, and Hope for Victims of Sexual Abuse
by Guest Author on February 7, 2018 in hunger offering
By Abby Hopkins
Home. A place meant not only for shelter but for shared meals, deep conversations, big dreams, and lots of laughter. A place many are accustomed to, never knowing what it would be like to not have one, or to have one corrupted by abuse.
However, for many children, this is what they are accustomed to. The Poiema Foundation assists those who have faced this reality. It starts by educating the public and raising awareness on sexual abuse, sex trafficking, and other methods of sexual exploitation...
Hope for the Holidays In Central Texas
by Guest Author on December 19, 2017 in hunger offering
When thinking about the holidays, our initial thoughts are often of joy and warm feelings. Time with family and friends and moments to reflect on the person of Jesus Christ naturally bring about peace. However, sometimes we may fail to recognize that many do not consider the holiday season a time of hope and rest if they struggle to meet physical needs of both themselves and their families...
Hunger Offering partnering with Refuge and Hope for #GivingTuesday
by Guest Author on November 15, 2017 in hunger offering
By Abby Hopkins
Love, peace, and hope embody the character of the holiday season for believers in Christ. It is a wonderful reminder to those who long to embody those same qualities in their personal character. Jesus said, “No one has greater love than this, to lay down one’s life for one’s friends” (John 15:13, NRSV).
While Jesus provided the ultimate sacrifice and perfect gift, he calls us to imitate his actions by laying down our priorities, desires, and needs for the sake of others. We, at Texas Baptist Hunger Offering, would love for you to join us in this “laying down” of self as we participate in #GivingTuesday.
After the flood: Hunger Offering ministry serves victims of Hurricane Harvey
by Guest Author on November 8, 2017 in hunger offering
By Abby Hopkins
Widespread panic, fear, and uncertainty erupted in the days after Aug. 25, when Hurricane Harvey made landfall and surpassed expectations of its potential destruction in Texas. Many experienced devastating loss as the state and country were forced to face the lurking question — what next?
Polk County Mission Center, also known as Center of Hope in Livingston, answered the question by serving. For those who had lost hope, the center provided resources to bring it back by establishing themselves as a 24-hour distribution center that began Aug. 31.
Thomas Crow, treasurer of Polk County Mission Center, said...
Thank you for dinner, Texas Baptists -- from Uganda
by Guest Author on October 31, 2017 in hunger offering
Hunger Offering Enables Refugee Women to Share a Meal
By Jaclyn R. Bonner
As a former Texas Baptist Hunger Offering intern, I can swiftly list the statistics of how many people are malnourished worldwide, how many families in Texas are food insecure, and how many ministries the Hunger Offering helps fund. A selection of inspirational stories of how God is using the Hunger Offering to mobilize ministries to transform lives is also readily on my mind. The Hunger Offering has impacted me, moved me, and challenged me. This month, it fed me.
I came to Kampala, Uganda, at the beginning of September to serve as a Go Now Missions...
By This Everyone Will Know
by Ali Hearon Corona on October 26, 2017 in clc
His name is Pedro — the man on the picture. I had the pleasure of meeting him outside an industrial refrigerator on a bright Tuesday morning in Cerdanyola, Spain. Carrying a bright smile, cheerful disposition, and a box full of lemons, he jokingly asked my teammate to take a picture of him because the lemons were massive that day — an uncanny size.
Pedro and his wife have faithfully attended Iglesia Evangelica Bautista of Cerdanyola for the past 36 years. The church leads a weekly food ministry that provides groceries for about 50 people in need. Pedro has volunteered since the doors opened 20 years ago.
“As a Christian, it is...
More than a Meal: Hunger Offering Ministry in Irving Transforms Lives
by Guest Author on August 18, 2017 in hunger offering
By Jaclyn Bonner
He came with a humble grin, $60, and one request – “pray for me.”
Jerry* was a changed man. His face was familiar to Ruby, a board member and volunteer at Crisis Ministries, an effort of Baptist Benevolent Ministries of Irving supported by Dallas Baptist Association, but his demeanor had been transformed.
When Jerry began coming to Crisis Ministries for food relief services, he was disrespectful, angry, and prideful. Even though Ruby invested time in Jerry’s life by sharing the gospel with him and showing him dignity by acknowledging him as “Mr.,” the young man remained callous and bitter.
This time, Jerry...
Short-term Project, Long-term Investment: Hunger Offering provides hope, healing for Ebola orphans
by Guest Author on July 31, 2017 in hunger offering
By Jaclyn Bonner
Abandoned, isolated, alone -- this is the fate of thousands of children in Sierra Leone who have been orphaned by the deadly Ebola virus. Although the Ebola scare is no longer prominent in international headlines, the devastating effects of the outbreak have changed a surfeit of lives.
A 2015 report* found that more than 12,000 children in Sierra Leone have lost at least one primary caregiver to the disease. The average Ebola orphan is 9 years old.
Restore Hope, a faith-based ministry that serves Ebola orphans in Sierra Leone, explains that children lose more than just their parents to the disease. The...
A Christian response to hunger: How church ministry is distinguished from cultural trends
by Guest Author on July 24, 2017 in hunger offering
By Jaclyn Bonner
Lately, I have been thinking about culture and faith.
I just finished perusing Leviticus and am journeying again through Numbers. These two Old Testament books, perhaps more than other parts of the Bible, are challenging to read, understand, and apply. The meticulous law, the priesthood rituals, and the early history of the Israelites can seem archaic, mundane, and irrelevant.
However, I am discovering how much the Pentateuch (the first five books of the Bible) emphasizes God’s desire for holiness. Holiness is to be set apart. It is to be separate from the world. However, holiness is not a call to negligence...
Finding hope on the side of the road
by Guest Author on July 19, 2017 in great commandment
By Analiz G. Schremmer
Baby Benjamin was abandoned on the side of the road wearing nothing but a small white blanket and bearing a note saying that anyone who wanted him, could have him.
“He was found by the villagers who passed by the road and informed the local authority,” said Rosy Lyn Htut, caseworker for Love for Myanmar. “They took the baby to one of our children’s homes called Kid’s Life.
“The home caregiver once showed me the baby photo when they first found him. He was so skinny, having sores on his whole body. He was about to die, and he couldn't even cry because not enough strength.”
Htut added that another baby...
Texas Baptist church lives out Isaiah 58
by Guest Author on July 12, 2017 in hunger offering
By Jaclyn Bonner
Isaiah 58 is a call to go beyond cultural religious habits and actively live out faith by restoring justice, sharing food with the hungry, and attending to the homeless. This poignant passage reveals God’s heart, as well as expresses immutable truths and timeless instruction.
When church members learned many families in the community face food insecurity and children in local schools are often hungry over the weekends,...
Welcome Neighbor: Hunger Offering Meets Needs, Fosters Community Among Refugees
by Guest Author on July 6, 2017 in hunger offering
By Jaclyn Bonner
“It is the first time I have heard the children laughing,” said the apartment complex manager. Although the African refugee families and South and Central American immigrants are all newcomers to Houston, their residence lacks a sense of community and pride.
In one week, the Houston Refugee Project, with assistance of volunteers from Meadow Oaks Baptist Church in Temple, revitalized the fragmented refugee community through a children’s camp. Fifty children and adolescents ages 2-18 years old from diverse ethnicities laughed, played, and had fun together.
This brought their families together for the first...
Living water brings hope in Southeast Asia
by Guest Author on June 6, 2017 in hunger offering
(Author’s name and location are withheld for security reasons.)
Clean water is essential for life. In one Southeast Asian village, clean water brought a community to church.
A newly established church in rural Southeast Asia requested a community-sized clean water filtration system be installed on the front lawn of their church. They desired to share their hope and faith in Christ and wanted to be a blessing to a community that was uncertain and fearful of their presence.
The Southeast Asia Water Relief project, a Texas Baptist Hunger Offering ministry, partnered with different organizations and local church leaders to...
Two churches provide clean water for Liberian community
by Ali Hearon Corona on May 24, 2017 in hunger offering
On Monday evening at the Executive Board meeting, Dr. Tom Howe, pastor of Birdville Baptist Church, and Kris Drees, pastor of Haltom Road Baptist Church, presented a $29,345.33 check to the Texas Baptist Hunger Offering.
The two churches joined together in fundraising over two months to provide the gift to Hunger Offering partner Lott Carey Mission to renovate a water tower in Brewerville, Liberia. This is the largest project for a single Hunger Offering project to date.
In Brewerville, an estimated 25,000 people must walk five to 10 miles a day to access water, which is not always clean. It is imperative for the...
Strength and Dignity -- A Mother’s Day Prayer
by Ali Hearon Corona on May 11, 2017 in clc
Mother’s Day is fast approaching.
As you celebrate your mom or the important women in your life, be sure to pray for women around the world who struggle to support their families.
Pray for women who are hungry -- According to Bread for the World, nearly half a billion females around the world do not have adequate nutrition for healthy lives, that’s 60% of people who are hungry.
Pray for mothers facing financial adversity -- The Center for Public Policy Priorities reports 42% of single-mother families in Texas live in poverty impacting their ability to provide adequate nutrition and housing for their families.
Hospitality leads us to "make room" -- for God and others
by Ali Hearon Corona on April 25, 2017 in clc
Lately, God has been putting the practice of hospitality on my heart. Specifically the phrase “make room.”
What does it look like to make room in our lives? I feel compelled to first make room for God. Create space to rest in Him, dwell in His Word, and abide in prayer.
I am also convicted to make room for others -- to practice hospitality. For me, this looks like welcoming guests into my home and connecting with new friends who are different than me.
On a much larger scale, the Texas Baptist Hunger Offering allows me to “make room” in my life for people across the world.
Through the Hunger Offering, ordinary believers join...
Meeting needs on the border: A Texas Baptist Hunger Offering story
by Kalie Lowrie on April 25, 2017 in great commandment
Many people who live in Agua Dulce, a small community in the southeast region of El Paso, have limited access to food and medical care. A large percentage of the community consists of undocumented immigrants and many families do not have fathers and husbands to provide for basic needs. Texas Baptists River Ministry Coordinator Jesus Galarza has worked around Agua Dulce for several years and has built trust with the residents in order to help meet basic needs.
This spring, Galarza coordinated a medical mission trip with students and physicians from UT-Southwestern Medical Center Baptist Student Ministry to provide medical...
Fight hunger! Give April 30 or Mother's Day or both
by Ali Hearon Corona on April 21, 2017 in hunger offering
Two Hunger Offering Sundays are coming soon!
April 30 - 5th Sunday Hunger Offering
May 14 - Mother’s Day Hunger Offering
These are great opportunities for the Kingdom! We would love your help to promote the dates to your churches and via social media.
Below are a few sample posts and graphics. Also, check out the new Mother's Day video with Dr. Hardage and Terri from Exodus ministries. Shout-out to Communications for doing a great job!
April 30 is a #HungerOffering 5th Sunday! Join me and gather your church to #endhunger in Texas and around the world. Check out Keep reading...
Texas Baptists churches partner to provide water for struggling Liberian community
by Analiz Schremmer on April 10, 2017 in news
Not everyone has easy access to one of the most basic resources – water.
About 25,000 people in Brewerville, Liberia have to walk five to 10 miles a day to get drinking water. Sometimes, the water isn’t even clean.
Tom Howe, pastor of Birdville Baptist Church, in Fort Worth, learned of the need in Lott Carey Mission (LCM) through the donations his church made to the Texas Baptist Hunger Offering because LCM is one of the recipients.
The church was moved by the need in Liberia and decided to give to the LCM water tower on top of their Texas Baptist Hunger Offering donation.
On March 26, Birdville Baptist partnered with...
Sustainability projects lift Indigenous people out of poverty
by Guest Author on March 16, 2017 in hunger offering
Hunger Offering ministry strives to end the cycle of poverty among Hondurans and empower individual families through farming sustainability projects and enterprise.
By Jaclyn Bonner
Five dollars will buy a venticoffee at Starbucks. Five dollars also isthe average daily living wage of the Lenca, the poorest people group in Honduras.
Coffee is a staple of the Lenca lifestyle. Many families harvest coffee during its season, and they likely drink more coffee than the average Starbucks customer. The Lenca live with entrenched poverty, but they also are notably hospitable, willingly offering a cup of coffee and a comfortable seat...
Food for Body and Soul: Hunger Offering ministry meets needs across Metroplex
by Guest Author on March 10, 2017 in hunger offering
By Jaclyn Bonner
Linda, a ministry volunteer, gently challenged Tamara with two poignant questions. “Why do you always come with your hand out? Why don’t you come and serve?” Linda’s view of service as a blessing affected Tamara, who decided to serve at the food giveaway the following week.
Tamara, a South Collins resident, learned about Christ through Linda, the neighborhood Bible study leader, who brought her food from Mission Arlington each week and invited her to Bible study.
When Tamara met Linda, she was not making good choices. She was impressed with Linda’s kindness and love. Linda continued to serve Tamara, driving her...
by Guest author on March 2, 2017 in hunger offering
By Jordan Corona
“Day by day, as they spent much time together in the temple, they broke bread at home and ate their food with glad and generous hearts, praising God and having the goodwill of all the people.” (Acts 2:46, NRSV)
Hands in Service, an Amarillo-based organization, is fighting malnutrition in Mexico and helping Christians there to experience the same things as the early Jerusalem church -- sharing food, praising God, and showing goodwill.
Texas Baptists support Hands in Service through the Texas Baptist Hunger Offering. Led by Director Lee Baggett, the ministry is teaching people how to grow gardens in their...
Becoming Family: Professional development for women transforms lives, fosters relationships
by Guest Author on February 16, 2017 in christian life commission
By Jaclyn Bonner
If not for the Heart of Texas Christian Women’s Job Corps sign, you could easily overlook the modest, beige, and olive-colored house on Coggin Avenue in Brownwood.
CWJC is home to transformative learning opportunities and holistic development for women. Established in Brownwood in 2003, the mission of the Heart of Texas branch of CWJC is to “care, guide, and equip women in a Christian environment,” explained Casey Moore, the director. CWJC is a ministry of Texas WMU.
Healthy Lunches, Brighter Minds: Nutritional meals for children help entire family
by Guest Author on February 9, 2017 in hunger offering
By Jaclyn Bonner
It is rare to find third graders who are eager to eat their fruits and vegetables, but every day 9-year-old José Chanco excitedly tells his family about the nutritious lunch he eats at the Operación San Andrés’ educational enrichment program for children in Collique, Lima, Peru.
José attends Fe y Alegría, a local primary school. He is one of about 170 children served through two OSA hunger alleviation programs.
Through the Living Water-OSA program, he is able to spend weekday mornings at OSA House. He benefits not only from healthy lunches that include fruit, vegetables, meat, and rice but also gets guidance...
Dallas teen works to make a difference in community: A Texas Baptist Hunger Offering Story
by Kalie Lowrie on January 12, 2017 in news
Mu was born in Southeast Asia and came to the United States with her family as refugees in 2007. As they settled in the Dallas area, her family found help and support from a Texas Baptist Hunger Offering ministry known as H4R. The ministry provided her family with help filling out government paperwork, ESL classes, assistance with homework and much more.
While she was in junior high, Mu attended a camp for refugee students hosted by H4R and accepted Christ as her Savior. Although her family background was Buddhist, several of her siblings made professions of faith as well. She began to grow in her faith and found encouragement...
How 25 chickens transformed a family - a Texas Baptist Hunger Offering Story
by Kalie Lowrie on October 20, 2016 in news
Soontorn Inthayok is a day laborer and part-time guard, serving as the primary wage earner for his family in Northern Thailand. The 49-year-old provides for his older sister, who is mentally disabled, and his son, who is attending technical college. He also overcomes his personal disability to bring home earnings of approximately $300 US dollars per month. While Soontorn works extremely hard, often the monthly expenses of food, utilities and tuition are more than what he earns.
When Soontorn learned he was selected to participate in the SDSU Chicken and Cattle Farming Project, he was elated. He received training on budgeting...
Last 5th Sunday Hunger Offering of Year and New Video Released
by Ali Hearon on October 18, 2016 in clc
Good news! The new Hunger Offering video is now released and ready to watch.
“Texas Baptist Hunger Offering at work in Spain” highlights Iglesia Evangelica Bautista’s food pantry in Cerdanyola, Spain, a Hunger Offering ministry.
The video introduces Antonia and Pedro, a couple who struggled financially due to the Spanish economic crash in 2008. After receiving assistance, they answered the call to give back and serve their community on a weekly basis.
Hunger Offering turns 20!
by Ali Hearon on September 20, 2016 in clc
We’re 20 years old! Being out of our teens means that you -- churches and individuals who give -- have helped us grow and mature.
As we look back at two decades of the Texas Baptist Hunger Offering helping people overcome poverty, it is astonishing. In those 20 years, more than $15 million have been raised to help people feed their families and get out of poverty.
So now, we are ready to celebrate as a Texas Baptist family and you are invited.
- What: 20th Anniversary Hunger Luncheon
- Who: You! And our Hunger Offering friends -- churches, past and present CLC staff (with a special video hello from Suzii Paynter), and
CWJC builds confidence and self-sufficiency in Abilene
by Ali Hearon on August 31, 2016 in hunger offering
In 2014, Brandy decided to make a change.
“I really knew I needed to do something different after I accidentally took too much of a certain medication,” she said. “It should have killed me. That’s when my boyfriend and I decided to do something.”
Brandy learned about the Christian Women’s Job Corps of Abilene from a friend at her church who invited her to some of the job skills classes offered on a weekly basis.
The Christian Women’s Job Corps helps women make decisions to build self-sufficiency into their households by offering job and life skills training, community and emotional support. A ministry of Woman's Missionary...
Back to school nerves
by Ali Hearon on August 18, 2016 in hunger offering
My niece, Caroline, is two years old. She is precious and recently returned from her first day at preschool with a confession to make.
“I feel nerbus (nervous),” she told my sister on the car ride home. Caroline is a bright kid. My sister is, too.
Many unknowns await children as they walk through the threshold of a new classroom. New teacher, new classmates, new rules -- it is a daunting experience to say the least.
Everybody knows what it is like to be afraid of the unknown. Few things are as universally unnerving as the prospect of doing something new among people we’ve never met. Times like these remind us how earnestly we...
Let Love Be Genuine: A Texas Baptist Hunger Offering Story
by Ali Hearon on July 20, 2016 in clc
The people of Spain are “really tired of hearing about Christ. ... They need to see real love, real love through real people,” Pastor Antonio Calero Cerrado boldly proclaimed.
Pastor Cerrado heads an outreach ministry of Iglesia Evangelica Bautista La Trinidad in Denia, Spain. He and Pastor Jorge Pastor have co-led the thriving church, averaging 400 in attendance in week, at a Baptist campground for the past 40 years.
Both pastors highlighted the difficulty of evangelism in Spain. The church history is wrought with persecution, dwindling numbers, and community disdain. Despite the barriers, the Lord has answered their prayers...
Reaching out to neighbors and fighting to end poverty
by Kalie Lowrie on July 7, 2016 in faith
Pastor Daniel Banyuls has served faithfully at Iglesia Evangelica Bautista in Cerdanyola, Spain, for the past 15 years. He supervises the church’s local food ministry, which provides groceries to about 50 neighbors in need each week. They partner with the local government to raise awareness of the ministry in the neighborhood and the results have been humbling.
The need for help in their local community is great, with many people suffering from the continued impact of the economic crisis of 2008. The opportunity to provide even a few staples, such as milk, bread, rice and meat, has had ripple...
New Life In Christian Community - A Texas Baptist Hunger Offering Story
by Ali Hearon on May 18, 2016 in hunger and poverty
A baby shower seems simple. Gifts, flowers, laughter; the party is a time of preparation and celebration of new life and a growing family. Love and expectancy are the essence of life in Christ. And while this practice may seem commonplace to some, it can make all the difference for a new mom in a new country.
Dr. Samira Izadi Page knows just how impactful a baby shower can be for a refugee mom. As the founder and executive of director of Gateway of Grace, she throws her fair share of celebrations. Gateway of Grace is a Dallas-based ministry that provides services and Christian care for refugees from nine countries, including...
Babs Baugh honored by Global Women
by Ali Hearon on May 11, 2016 in hunger offering
“Like good stewards of the manifold grace of God, serve one another with whatever gift each of you has received.” 1 Peter 4:10, NRSV
We are excited to announce that Babs Baugh will receive the Global Heart Award at the upcoming Global Women’s 15th Birthday Gala during the Cooperative Baptist Fellowship General Assembly in Greensboro, N.C..
Global Women is a Hunger Offering recipient that seeks to love and serve vulnerable women across the globe. The award highlights Babs’ commitment to stewarding the “manifold grace of God” and caring for people who live on the margins.
Congratulations, Babs Baugh!
Babs Baugh is president...
New Hunger Offering video released
by Ali Hearon on May 4, 2016 in clc
Good news! The new Texas Baptist Hunger Offering video is ready to watch and share!
This video provides an overview of the Hunger Offering, highlights footage of people impacted by Hunger Offering initiatives, and displays the gospel in action. Not to mention it has cool graphics created by my friend, Josef.
I recently ate at Whataburger for the first time.
I know. The Texans are shocked.
As directed by the accompanying party, I ordered a Number 1 meal with cheese. Admittedly, I was pleasantly surprised by the experience despite my initial reservations.
The total for my meal was $5.59. Feeding America estimates that a...
Providing hope and a new start for mothers reentering society
by Kalie Lowrie on April 26, 2016 in great commandment
The first day a mom and her children set foot at Exodus Ministries, they are welcomed into a beautiful, fully-furnished apartment. Each apartment is uniquely decorated by thoughtful volunteers. Each kitchen comes completely stocked with groceries, through support of the Texas Baptist Hunger Offering. Each detail is covered in prayer and the family has everything they need to begin a new life.
Having just been released from incarceration or a residential rehabilitation facility, these mothers often come to the complex with only the clothes on their back. The look of wonder and awe as they take in their new surrounding is Case...
May is a time for celebrating and giving
by Ali Hearon on April 20, 2016 in clc
May is a month of celebration and gathering around the table. As we take time to honor mothers and wish our best to recent grads, several in our communities will face the reality of food insecurity. In Texas, one in six families do not know where they will get their next meal.* Globally, one in nine of our neighbors are malnourished.** Hunger is an overwhelming issue, but we may respond with practical hope.
When facing complex problems, I sometimes find myself feeling frozen by my own questions: "How can I make a dent...What type of food do people need or want?"
To others who may feel small before a giant need, I offer this bit...
Help That Makes A Difference
by Ali Hearon on March 23, 2016 in clc
(Ali hearon will lead a workshop titled "Community Transformation: Foundations for Community Ministry" at the Micah 6:8 Conference March 31-April 1 at Trinity Baptist Church in San Antonio. The conference will feature authors Jen and Brandon Hatmaker.)
Amy has an outgoing personality, lots of perseverance, and a heart for service. Her welcoming presence and vivacious sense of humor draw others to her in friendship. Amy also happens to be in recovery from an intense addiction to alcohol that has wreaked havoc on her life and relationships.
Amy is now living in sobriety in Trinity, though her name is changed here. She is surrounded by...
What homes of restoration and redemption look like
by Rachel Hendricks on February 25, 2016 in faith
Nestled next to both Texas Christian University and Paschal High School lies a small building, which is home to Southside City Church pastored by Darrel and Kim Auvenshine. Before Southside was a church, it began as a group of people meeting at a park to serve the HIV community of Fort Worth.
"We built our church on Matthew 25," Darrel Auvenshine said during an interview. "We wished to serve 'the least of these,' and that our church could feel like their home when they might not have one."
On the southside of Fort Worth poverty has been prevalent for decades. In the past few years, this area has experienced a revitalization.
Today we have hope, today we are fed: Texas Baptist Hunger Offering at Work
by Guest Author on February 22, 2016 in great commandment
Ruth sat at a table in the two-room shack where she lived with her abusive husband and four hungry children in the Dominican Republic. She stared at a cup of tea in her hand that would cause her to abort a fifth child she was now carrying.
"Ruth! Ruth!" She heard Rosa Elena calling her name from across the street. It became a God-moment, and the calling of Ruth's name saved the precious life of Ruth's unborn child.
Rosa Elena did not just cry out to Ruth; Rosa Elena fed Ruth and her children, and shared God's love for her and spoke of the gift of life Ruth carried within her.
Today, Ruth serves in a kitchen preparing food for more...
Waco ministry digging in the dirt with students
by Ali Hearon on January 12, 2016 in christian life commission
"In the garden you learn a lot about identity," Kaley explained, as we discussed World Hunger Relief's School Garden Project.
WHRI, in Waco, is a "Christian organization committed to the alleviation of hunger around the world" through sustainable farming. While WHRI, supported by multiple Baptist churches, has agricultural programs internationally, such as in Liberia, El Salvador, and Haiti, they also have projects here in Texas.
The Texas Baptist Hunger Offering is a long-time partner of WHRI. Currently, the offering supports the ministry's School Gardening Project in three local schools. The project is an afterschool...
Hunger Offering needs are still great
by Ferrell Foster on November 17, 2015 in christian life commission
Hungry people in Texas and around the world need your help. Giving through the Texas Baptist Hunger Offering has dropped greatly this year, but the need has not.
People in poverty need your support now. November has a fifth Sunday, which many churches use to collect Hunger Offering funds. Also direct individual gifts to the offering are being promoted through a Thanksgiving Share-a-Thon. Give by calling toll-free (800) 791-1544 (English or Spanish) or give online at either hungeroffering.org or the Spanish-language site, ofrendacontraelhambre.org.
Through October, Texas Baptists have given $543,518 through the offering. That's a lot...
My First 90 Days
by Ali Hearon on September 17, 2015 in faith
It is hard to believe today marks exactly three months since I started working for Texas Baptists.
As I reflect on this first quarter at the Christian Life Commission, I cannot help but be grateful for this season of learning and connecting.
This summer has been a whirlwind of conferences across the state, meetings with ministries and associations, and planning for upcoming events and materials. My new role proves itself to be dynamic, exhilarating, and forever stretching -- for which I am exceedingly grateful!
Stepping back from the many moving parts, I am keenly aware of God at work in Texas. With each visit, meeting, or even...
Cyclists weather storms to end hunger
by Kalie Lowrie on May 21, 2015 in news
When you are driven by a great cause, like working to end the cycle of hunger and poverty experienced by millions worldwide, a 500-mile bike ride seems a little more possible. Twenty-nine cyclists from across Texas, along with a few riders from Colorado and New York, joined together May 11-16 for the Sixth Annual Bike Out Hunger-Texas ride. This year, the team traveled from Boerne, near San Antonio, to Dallas with shared goals to raise money and awareness for hunger needs across Texas and around the world.
Funds raised by the cyclists were given to the Texas Baptist Hunger Offering, which supports 180 ministries worldwide through...
Refugee families adjust to life in the US with help of Houston ministry
by Leah Reynolds on May 4, 2015 in great commandment
Loaves & Fishes is a ministry actively seeking to alleviate hunger amongst refugee children in Houston. They receive funds from Texas Baptists Hunger Offering via the Union Baptist Association, which help the ministry in a variety of ways:
- Providing a hot meal for children on Saturday nights, when they do not receive a meal from school
- Keeping a stock of food items such as rice and lentils for families to take when food stamps run low
- Packing children's backpacks in the summertime with food
Margie Randall, retired IMB missionary, has a special place in her heart for children. Ever since God called her to help refugee...
Children in volatile community find hope and health through local ministry
by Kalie Lowrie on April 22, 2015 in great commandment
Open House Ministries is a ministry actively seeking to alleviate hunger and poverty in Homestead, Florida. They receive funds from the Texas Baptist Hunger Offering, which help OHM in a variety of ways:
- Providing healthy snacks for 70 students after school daily
- Teaching elementary-aged students about nutrition and healthy eating habits as they help grow vegetables in six community garden beds
- Interacting with youth and children through homework assistance, Bible stories, music, art, sports and computer training
Open House Ministries is a community ministry, which rose up out of needs following Hurricane Andrew...
Alfalfa concentrate and education help alleviate malnutrition in Mexico
by Leah Reynolds on April 14, 2015 in great commandment
Hands in Service Ministries (HISM) is a ministry that is actively seeking to alleviate hunger in Mexico. They receive funds from Texas Baptist Hunger Offering, which help HISM in a variety of ways:
- With travel and material costs to allow HISM to offer family garden courses
- To provide intensive gardening techniques for those in urban and suburban areas
- To help families to begin small animal production by providing quail, chickens and rabbits
- To set up one alfalfa-processing unit that is functioning on a weekly basis
- Will allow HISM to set up another unit in another community shortly
While out walking one day in...
Giving to Fight Hunger in the Midst of Lent
by Jordan Corona on March 5, 2015 in hunger offering
For many in the developed world, hunger is the sort of thing one may experience after skipping lunch. At least we call it hunger; sometimes there's a headache to go along with it. Real hunger makes a person unable to think clearly. Chronic hunger, according to the United Nations, is that point when the human body begins to break down its own muscle and fat to survive.
For some of us at this very moment, we are duking it out with carnality and all its snacky vices by fasting for the Lenten season, and that might leave us feeling peckish and contemplative by the day's end.
Fasting is good. It is an important spiritual discipline, no...
Texas Baptists loving neighbors through Hunger Offering
by Jordan Corona on January 15, 2015 in christian life commission
This month, the Christian Life Commission is set to distribute funds to 117 ministries throughout the state of Texas and more than 67 international ones through the Texas Baptist Hunger Offering. That is a reflection of the generosity of Texas Baptists, an indication about the contents of their hearts.
Feeding people who don't have enough to eat and helping others to climb out of poverty is part of our obedience to Jesus' command to love our neighbors as ourselves. Doing so in a way that maximizes the support we can offer to ministries working with hungry people is a Christian responsibility.
Financial support through the Hunger...
$6,000 of Hunger funds reallocated to help bring jobs during Ebola epidemic
by Leah Reynolds on December 16, 2014 in
Commissioners of the Christian Life Commission (CLC) unanimously approved a reallocation of $6,000 of Texas Baptist Hunger Offering funds in Sierra Leone because of the Ebola crisis.
The funds, originally intended to aid school fees and meals for students will instead help rehabilitate the school, which has been closed for nearly half a year due to the Ebola epidemic that has taken and is taking away many lives and jobs in West African countries.
The request to reallocate the funds came from the Baptist Convention of Sierra Leone as they foresee a better use of the money is to open up job opportunities for residents.
Texas Baptist Hunger Offering needs end-of-year boost
by Ferrell Foster on October 9, 2014 in christian life commission
Texas Baptists are generous, but our giving to fight hunger and poverty has lagged this year. Through August, Texas Baptists gave $548,395 through the Texas Baptist Hunger Offering. That's a lot of money, but it is significantly less than we gave last year -- $727,877 or 75.3 percent.
As we give millions of dollars to support church programs, it is important to remember that Jesus said care for the poor is a key indicator that a person is seeking to follow Him. When we seek to follow Christ we will have a Spirit-inspired burden to care for those who suffer. If we don't, something's wrong with our spiritual life.
Despite the lag in...
Texas Baptists raise $182,000 for hunger through Mother’s Day Offering
by Kalie Lowrie on September 5, 2014 in news
DALLAS - Texas Baptists gave more than $182,000 to help end hunger and poverty through the Second Annual Mother's Day Hunger Offering. These gifts are used for hunger relief and anti-poverty programs both in Texas and abroad.
“As Texas Baptists we heed God's call to minister to those in need, in Texas and around the world," said Dr. David Hardage, executive director.
The Texas Baptist Hunger Offering strives to show the power of God's love to those in need. Ministries supported through the offering range from feeding programs in local churches to job training for single mothers and improved water and sanitation resources for...
Thank you for giving to Mother's Day Hunger Offering
by Jay Netherton on May 14, 2014 in news
Mother's Day, May 11, 2014, marked the conclusion of the Christian Life Commission's Mother's Day Hunger Offering initiative. With a goal of raising $1 million on this day, churches from across the state joined hands to help beat the cycle of hunger and poverty not only in Texas, but around the world. Final tallies will be made as donations continue to pour in throughout the month.
Last year marked the first annual Mother's Day offering as a part of the greater, year-around Texas Baptists Hunger Offering and raised over $250,000. This year, we are eager to see how God has provided for this life-changing ministry through your...
Never too young
by Kalie Lowrie on May 6, 2014 in great commandment
FREDERICKSBURG - You don't have to be an expert cyclist to take part in the week-long Bike Out Hunger event. Our youngest rider this year, Gertie Kate Adair, is only seven years old.
Gertie Kate is from Dripping Springs and she is a proud supporter of her dad, Ben. Last year, when Ben spent the week riding with Bike Out Hunger, Gertie Kate decided that she wanted to join her dad for his next ride.
"I've been waiting a whole year for this," she said. When asked why, she said she really likes to ride her bike and spend time with her dad, and she wanted to help.
She rode 9.42 miles today, right alongside Ben. It was hot and there were...
Backpacks of food and hope provided through Hunger Offering
by Kalie Lowrie on May 5, 2014 in great commandment
FREEPORT - Most children look forward to 3 p.m. on Friday afternoon, signaling the end of school and beginning of the weekend. There are roughly 65 hours between Friday afternoon and Monday morning when school starts again. Many kids delight in these hours, but for children who do not have food at home, the hours can be long and hard. While many schools have feeding programs for breakfast and lunch for students in need, the weekends can be a time when food is scarce.
Operation Backpack, supported through the Texas Baptist Hunger Offering, seeks to step in and provide homeless and chronically hungry students in the Freeport and Jones...
Growing to live through hunger offering
by Kara Kistner on April 21, 2014 in great commandment
GUADALAJARA, Mexico - Hands in Service, an organization that receives funding from Texas Baptist Hunger Offering, provides family garden workshops through missions and churches in the poverty belt around the city of Guadalajara and other communities, as well as in rural areas. These workshops help train and educate people to grow their own food to provide better nutrition at a lower cost.
Family Gardens is a project designed and carried out in cooperation with Manos Hermanas, in Guadalajara and numerous other areas where space is available to train and optimize intensive gardens to benefit those in poverty to help them feed their...
Honduras: A display of His splendor
by Kalie Lowrie on April 11, 2014 in great commandment
CENICERA, Honduras - The kids here in Honduras have stolen my heart! Last night we attended a worship service at a house church in Cenicera, just a few miles from Gracias. When we arrived, I recognized several of the kids from the day before when we were at their house interviewing their parents. One precious girl named Ruby came up and hugged me, followed by another six I had never met before. They looked up at me with these beautiful eyes and told me their names. I hugged them each back and repeatedly asked, "Como estas?" (the only Spanish I really know).
Ruby is nine and currently suffering from leukemia. Her family receives food...
Hunger in Honduras: The face of a thankful heart
by Kalie Lowrie on April 10, 2014 in great commandment
CATULACA, Honduras - Felipe is paralyzed from the waist down after a tragic accident about five years ago. He has undergone eight surgeries and was forced to sell most of his land to pay for the medical procedures. He was the primary breadwinner for his family of six and now many times they wonder how they will eat. The family raises pigs for income and has many chickens roaming around the yard to provide sustenance.
When we arrived at his house today, Felipe, his wife, daughter and brother were overjoyed to see Shannon Hopkins, a missionary with 61 Isaiah Ministries, and his friends. They were also beyond thankful for the food that...
Hunger in Honduras: Bringing hope across a footbridge
by Kalie Lowrie on April 9, 2014 in great commandment
GRACIAS, Honduras - Today, we saw the Texas Baptist Hunger Offering in action, with three men carrying nearly 60 pounds of food on their backs, across a shaky wooden footbridge to a family in need. Shannon Hopkins and his friends, Kevin and Hugo, carried the load of food to a family of 15, living in extreme poverty.
Shannon serves as a missionary with 61 Isaiah Ministries, a ministry that receives funding from the Texas Baptist Hunger Offering, and seeks to provide food to those in crisis situations in and around Gracias, Honduras. 61 Isaiah Ministries also partners with Ellis Baptist Association to receive support for the work they...
Hunger offering inspires others to give back
by Kara Kistner on April 7, 2014 in great commandment
FORT WORTH - This year churches are holding a special offering on Mother's Day to support the Mother's Day Hunger Offering. By uniting the efforts of Texas Baptists, we can raise $1 million this Mother's Day to end hunger one mom at a time. One mom that has received help from this offering is a woman named Kay Schmenk.
Kay Schmenk is a 73-year-old who has been participating in the Senior Supplement Program, a monthly feeding program at Northside Inter-Community Agency (NICA), since 2006. She lives off of her Social Security check each month of less than $700.
NICA, one of several ministries in Fort Worth that receives support through...
Hunger Offering helps family overcome poverty in Bangladesh
by Kalie Lowrie on March 24, 2014 in great commandment
BHALUKA UPAZILA, Bangladesh - Conditions were hard for Asma Khatun and her family of five, living in extreme poverty in a small village in Bangladesh. While her husband, Babul Dhaly, worked hard to provide, they did not own any land to plant crops and they were not able to earn enough income to provide three meals a day for their family.
Not only did she learn about business and agriculture, but Asma was also provided with a...
Hunger funds help mom find a shoulder to lean on
by Kalie Lowrie on March 11, 2014 in great commandment
NEW BRAUNFELS - Gloria Mata needed help. Medical bills from her daughter's illness stacked up, and the single mother realized she no longer had enough money to put food on the table for her family of six.
Deliverance came in the form of a voucher from her daughter's school that referred Mata to the Harvest Food Pantry, a ministry of New Braunfels Christian Ministries, which is funded in part through Texas Baptists' special Mother's Day Hunger Offering.
Texas Baptists give record $953,000 toward Hunger Offering
by Kalie Lowrie on February 13, 2014 in news
DALLAS - Texas Baptists gave more than $953,000 to the Texas Baptist Hunger Offering in 2013 to help address hunger and poverty issues around the world. This is the largest amount raised through the offering since its creation in 1995, and an increase of $200,000 from 2012.
"I am humbled by the generosity of churches and individuals around the state who chose to give to the Texas Baptist Hunger Offering," said Dr. David Hardage, executive director. "Without them, we, as an organization could not do what we do. Thank you to all of you who gave of your resources. We are extremely grateful. Your gifts are changing lives across our...
Providing spiritual nourishment for those in need
by Kalie Lowrie on November 25, 2013 in great commandment
CORPUS CHRISTI - Juan Rena was hungry and hurting when he came to the Crossbridge Fellowship Church food pantry. He had no idea how the Lord would change his life in the following year and lead him to become the director of the ministry that impacted him in so many ways.
Addicted to cocaine and meth for more than 25 years, Juan wanted to find a way to turn his life around and find meaning again. He was also in need of food, which led him to Crossbridge's food pantry just a few streets away from his home where he could come twice a month for essential needs.
As Juan and his girlfriend, Tina, received food each month, they noticed...