Let’s skip church Sunday?

Published 12:00 am Thursday, October 7, 2010

The First United Methodist Church of Opp is issuing what some may consider a strange call to action to its members — don’t go to church this Sunday.

FUMC Pastor Jimmy Allen said instead, the members of his congregation will serve the community this Sunday by handing out care packages and helping with work around the house.

“We’re calling it Faith in Action Sunday,” he said. “I had heard of some other churches across the nation doing the very same thing. We are calling off all of our Sunday services.

“We are going to help people who can’t help themselves and organizations like Sav-A-Life,” he said. “We’re going to go to several places in Opp, take care packages to the nursing home and the Woodmore, and we’re going to do some work at Sav-A-Life.”

Allen said he read about other churches reaching out to the community on Sundays rather than having a church service in a publication.

“I thought it would be a unique way to help people,” he said. “I know it will make an impact because we are closing the church (this Sunday only).”

Allen said the church hopes to send a message to the community that they are here to help.

Volunteers from both the church and the community will join together to assist local residents around their homes and to visit in the community, and these are only a few of the activities scheduled for the day.

“We have a lot of people signed up,” Allen said. “A lot of people are concerned about working on Sunday, but Jesus worked. He healed people and helped people.”

Allen said this is in no way a fundraiser for the church.

“We are not wanting any money from anyone,” he said. “We are just wanting to serve the community.”

Allen said he is pleased with the support from church members.

“We’re excited about how our congregation has rallied to support this special weekend of service to our community,” he said. “The people in our work parties are members of our community and neighbors who see the value of helping others. We invite you to join us.”

For more information about the Faith in Action Sunday, call 493-9731 or visit the church Web site at oppfumc.org

Dakota Misak, the Rev. Jimmy Allen and Faye Finedore (above) sort through items for care packages. | Kendra Bolling/Star-News