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A Season for Giving

By Deacon Bob Olsen

Now I must admit, for most of my life, the Christmas Season was one spent in anticipation of receiving more than one of Giving. And yes I know the saying is “it is better to give than to receive” – I just wanted to help folks out in their ability to give.

Somewhere along the line I’ve come to realize that there isn’t anything I  need, having taken psych 101 and business classes, I’m aware of Maslow’s hierarchy of needs and being well past the physiological, safety and belonging levels I no longer have any “Needs” in those areas. While Maslow includes the higher levels of Esteem and Self-actualization levels as needs, you can live pretty happy if you’re safe and warm and fed, and feel you belong. My point is that I, and I’m guessing most of us, are well above the “basic need” levels on a daily basis. So getting doesn’t become as important during the Christmas Season. However there are lots of people in our area and around the world who are in need and we can help them.

Here are just four opportunities to Give to meet the needs of others: advent words

ECS – Episcopal Community Services of Northern California (ECS). Joy is the theme for the third Sunday of Advent. Joy is hoping. Joy is giving. Joy is receiving. Joy is sharing. Bishop Beisner has designated the third Sunday of Advent, for the annual appeal of ECS. ECS uses our gifts to fund Ministry Development Grants. In the past St George’s has received two such grants – on of $1000 that helped build the garden shed and a second of $3100 to help with the fence. ECS has helped us to “Serve Christ by serving others” through our garden. Donation will help ECS continue their work of grant giving to help other churches in developing and maintaining outreach programs. For more information: www.norcalecs.org/

ERD – For 75 years, Episcopal Relief and Development (ERD) has been healing a hurting world – honoring Jesus’ call to care for the least of these. During this Advent season congregations are asked to help celebrate this Anniversary Year by supporting Gifts for Life. On the easel in the parish hall is the Gift’s for Life Advent Calendar. On the side table in the church is a Gifts for Life catalog. For more information: www.Episcopalrelief.org/giftsforlife

Heifer – For many years St George’s has supported the work of Heifer Project International (HPI). This is Heifer’s 70th Anniversary and to celebrate that the Regions recognized  congregations and organizations that have supported Heifer throughout the years – St George’s was one of 20 such groups recognized in the Northern California Valley area. Heifer provides grants for long term programs to help communities support and sustain themselves. For more information: http://www.heifer.org/catalog

Giving Tuesday – Episcopal Church Development (ECD) Office – Dec 2, 2014 – The Episcopal Church will participate in the global charitable event Giving Tuesday. Episcopal Church Development office is trying to raise $240,000 to build six hogans in Navajoland, two each in Arizona, New Mexico and Utah. For more information: http://navajoland.org/build-a- hogan.html

You can give directly to all of these agencies, but generally that puts you on their mailing list. If you’d prefer not to be on their mailing list, then donations can be made through St George’s, by writing a check to St George’s and then on the memo line write donation and to which agency ECS/ERD/HPI/ECD or combination you wish to donate.

“Then the righteous will answer Him, ‘Lord, when did we see You hungry, and feed You, or thirsty, and give You something to drink? ‘And when did we see You a stranger, and invite You in, or naked, and clothe You? ‘When did we see You sick, or in prison, and come to You?’ “The King will answer and say to them, ‘Truly I say to you, to the extent that you did it to one of these brothers of Mine, even the least of them, you did it to Me.’ Matt 25:37-40


Deacon Bob


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