Our faith is active. We do our best to follow in the way of Jesus as we seek to be in partnership with our community - amplifying the voices of those who are unheard, walking side-by-side with those who are in need, and finding Christ in all we encounter.
Since 1998, we have hosted The Second Helping, a weekly community meal for anyone who needs it. Guests are served a home-cooked dinner in the fellowship hall and are given a sack lunch with food for breakfast and lunch the next day. We have joined with other organizations that host community meals as a part of Common Table.
In 2018 we launched our Blessing Box, a place for members of the local community to "take what they need and leave what they can."
We also partner with many local non-profits in the Manhattan area. Here are a few of the organizations we support.
The churches of Manhattan, Kansas, have long helped low-income families with small monetary gifts in times of crisis. Some of the pastors of these churches saw the need for coordinating and improving these efforts. In 2000, five of the churches (including First Congregational UCC) founded Shepherd's Crossing to centralize their emergency financial assistance. In April 2001, with 13 churches participating, Shepherd's Crossing opened its doors. Shepherd's Crossing gives financial assistance in three categories: rent, utilities, and prescription drugs. Volunteer counselors work with each person with an attitude of caring and concern, listening to the client and offering advice on how to cope with difficult circumstances. Referral to other community service agencies is a major part of the counselor's job. First Congregational UCC supports Shepherd’s crossing with both volunteers and financial contributions. For more information on Shepherd’s Crossing, click here or call 785-776-1470.
Flint Hills Community Clinic
The Flint Hills Community Clinic opened its doors in July, 2005. Its purpose is to provide care for people without insurance who are not eligible for any other program. Local area physicians and other health professionals volunteer their services to staff the clinic. Other volunteers provide a wide range of support services. First Congregational UCC supports the clinic both financially and with volunteers. For more information on Flint Hills Community Clinic, click here.
Other Local Missions
Our congregation provides support in various ways to other local agencies such as the Flint Hills Breadbasket, the Crisis Center, the Emergency Shelter, Sunflower CASA, and others.