100% of Plymouth's Easter Sunday offering will go towards supporting refugees in crisis both here in the U.S. and in Ukraine.
Easter Sunday Offering
Maybe February 24 felt like a run-of-the-mill Thursday in your house. But you may have spent that day glued to your TV, radio, or social media, trying to make sense of Russia’s invasion of Ukraine. Over the past six weeks, we’ve expressed horror and sadness as Russia bombed hospitals, schools, apartment buildings, and other civilian areas. We’ve watched millions of Ukrainians flee, seeking refuge within their country or neighboring nations. We’ve cheered the Ukrainian people’s determination to fight this attack on their sovereign nation. Russia’s invasion has quickly caused a full-scale humanitarian crisis. As God’s people, we’re called to ease the world’s suffering. And right now, Ukraine is calling out to us.
Plymouth’s Mission and Service Board has voted to donate our Easter Sunday offering to the United Church of Christ’s Ukraine Relief Fund and the Plymouth Language Program. All of the funds collected on Easter Sunday will be dedicated to service.
The Plymouth Language Program (PLP) funds will support refugees and immigrants who want to learn English locally, nationally, and internationally. PLP’s free online English as a second language courses have had a huge impact during these past few years. The Plymouth Language Program has increased 400% since going online! PLP now reaches students in more than six states and three different countries. Graduates of the program are returning to volunteer. The program currently has a waitlist and is exploring ways to expand.
The United Church of Christ’s (UCC) relief fund efforts will provide shelter, food, and other care to war refugees and internally displaced people. It also will help refugees and asylum seekers from African, Middle Eastern, and other countries who had sought refuge in Ukraine and now are twice displaced and citizens of more than 125 other countries living in Ukraine.
As a member of the ACT Alliance, UCC support is being targeted to people most in need through humanitarian relief partners with a history of working in the region. For example, Hungarian Interchurch Aid has worked along the Hungary-Ukraine border for years. It is focusing its war relief in Ukraine in two border cities. In a 10-day span early in the conflict, it trucked 278 metric tons of food and non-food items into Ukraine for relief efforts there.
Throughout Lent, we remember the love of God that is poured out through Christ Jesus on the cross in His death and celebrate His resurrection that leads to everlasting life. What better way to honor His love than to help others in need?