Jesus Christ  |  Prayer & The Word of God  |  Compassion  |  Relationship  |  Community

TOL NEWSLETTER

COMMUNITY IMPACT

Summer 2017

Reaching out with the love of Jesus Christ

 

I have shared my story with some. It was perhaps the most devastating act of terror on US soil on ‘911’ that was used by God to shape my life. It was during that day I was overwhelmed with compassion for the American people and two years later, our move from the UK to the US was in motion.

 

This past month, I watched from afar as perhaps the most devastating act of terror to beset my home town of Manchester unfolded. I was overwhelmed with compassion for the people of Manchester. I was born there, raised there, educated there and worked there - within 2 minutes of the scene of destruction. Most pointedly, I found salvation in Jesus Christ there. The cliché rang true – you can take the boy out of Manchester, but you can never take Manchester out of the boy.

 

I was greatly moved as I witnessed a mother’s plea on TV screens for her daughter who had not been found after the bombing. She was later identified as one of the tragic victims. Her name was Olivia Campbell. Two of my children are called Olivia and Campbell. I was reminded of the privilege we have to love those nearest to us – unconditionally.

 

If ever we need reminding of our calling as cupbearers of the King, it is in these times.

Nehemiah has always been greatly inspiring to me as the Tree of Life journey has unfolded. Our Purpose is defined as ‘reaching out to the poor and needy in our community with the love of Jesus Christ.’ Today, I would urge you to reach out with the love of Jesus Christ more than ever before. 
If you are on the fence about committing, if you are challenged with conflicting priorities, if leadership is tiring, if you’re having second thoughts – reach out with the love of Jesus Christ. Nehemiah encapsulates our Tree of Life values. They are real today: Jesus Christ is foremost – ‘O Lord, God of heaven, the great and awesome God’ (1:5) Prayer and the Word of God is foundational – ‘O Lord, let your ear be attentive to the prayer of this your servant’ (1:11) Compassion is fundamental – ‘When I heard these things, I sat down and wept’ (1:4) Relationship is for all – ‘They are in great trouble’ (1:3) Community is our front line – ‘Jerusalem (Purcellville, Leesburg, Winchester and Manchester) lies in ruins…come, let us rebuild’ (2:17) Today, more than ever before, reach out to the poor and needy in our community with the love of Jesus Christ. ‘The God of heaven will give us success. We are cupbearers to the King.’ Blessings, Paul Smith Executive Director, Tree of Life Ministries

Upcoming Events

PURCELLVILLE REGION

Community Kitchen:

Every Thursday evening from 5:30-6:30 pm

 

ESOL:

Dates: July 6, 13, 20, 27

Aug 3, 10, 17

 

Back to School Teen Clothing Giveaway:

Dates: Aug. 26 and Sept. 9

 

Volunteer Introduction Program (VIP):

Dates: July 15 and Sept 16

 

TOL Academy:

Dates:  Aug. 19

 

To see a full calendar list click here

 

 

 

 

Community Kitchen and English Classes will resume in the Fall.

 

To see a full calendar list click here

 

 

 

 

 

Join Us - Free Lunch:

Date: July 7th and July 21st

Time: 12pm-1:30pm

 

To see a full calendar list click here

 

 

 

LEESBURG REGION

WINCHESTER REGION

WANT TO HELP?

Pray

 

Donate

 

Volunteer

 

PURCELLVILLE REGION

Director’s Corner

By: Dell Nunaley - Regional Director, Purcellville

 

As this edition of our newsletter hits your mailbox we’ve been busy with many of our spring events.  Literally hundreds of Tree of Life volunteers have worked mightily to launch our annual spring clothing and furniture giveaway, to renovate in and out a 19th century homestead for an elderly partner, and to restock the food pantry with hundreds of pounds of foodstuff that has been donated with several generous spring food drives.  Many hands and hearts have joined in a tremendous activity of love and labor!  What generates the source of all this activity?

 

The Church has entered the season of Pentecost.  She celebrates the coming of the Holy Spirit on the early followers of Jesus.  This energizing force came upon them, causing many to be baptized, sharing their life together, focusing on teaching, fellowship, breaking of bread, and prayer.  They shared their belongings so that no one went hungry or needy.

 

 

Pentecost is a vivid illustration of the truth that is found throughout Scripture; the community of God’s people is central to God’s work in the world.  It reminds us of why Tree of Life exists, people using their gifts to share the love and justice of Christ with the community and the world.

 

As we continue to do God’s good work it’s helpful for all of us to reflect:  Are we relying on the power of God’s Spirit?  Are we an open channel for the Spirit’s gifts?  Are we attentive to the guidance of the Holy Spirit?  May we all enjoy that energy and power of the Spirit as we work together to spread the love of Jesus Christ to our community!  And I thank everyone, volunteers, donors, partners, and churches who contribute to this labor of love.

 

 

Purcellville Community Serve Day

 

On May 6, 2017, Tree of Life’s Shelter Branch held it’s eleventh annual Community Serve Day; and for the eleventh year in a row, hundreds were blessed.  Community Serve Day consisted of two very large events; a Clothing and Furniture Giveaway held at Purcellville Baptist Church, and a Working Hands Home Renovation Project in Purcellville.  The two combined events drew over 180 volunteers.

 

Clothing & Furniture Giveaway:

The Clothing & Furniture Giveaway was an enormous success, providing
clothing, shoes, accessories, free breakfast, and dental care supplies to over
460 people.  While the main event was about clothes and furniture, TOL had
all their branches at work during the event. Twelve people received free
blood pressure checks, provided by Tree of Life’s Heath care Branch.
Tree of Life’s Food Branch also contributed food for breakfast and gave away pastries and other sweets, while over 500 sausage biscuits and oranges were provided to the attendees.

The ESOL ministry enrolled students into classes for the ministry’s LifeSkills Branch, which included English training, financial assistance and resume writing. Moms and Dads enjoyed shopping at their leisure by taking advantage of the free childcare available that morning as well.

We are blessed to have many leaders like Debbie Marshall and Dave Haddock
who devote many hours planning and implementing this great community event!

Working Hands Home Renovation Project:

The Home Renovation held at the home of Louis Jett just south of Hillsboro, was held over the course of three weekends; a prep weekend, a work weekend, and a finalization weekend.  While weekend rainy weather inhibited the pace of operations, the grace of God along with the flexibility of His servants brought everything together beautifully.

 

Dozens of volunteers cleaned the yard (which was overgrown and on steep hilly ground); scraped, primed, and painted the exterior of the house; paneled an
interior room, insulated the attic and floor, and had the roof repaired and painted among the major tasks completed.  We thank God for leaders like Doug Gill
and Chap Gleason who planned and supervised the many volunteers making
 up the work crew.

 

 

Capstone Project

 

From May 15th to May 31st this year Tree of Life hosted three outstanding LVHS seniors who worked their Capstone project with us.  Each year qualifying seniors are excused from classes during this time to work community projects and engage with the local civic organizations.  We are so happy to report that Taylor Kamhong, Lizzie Wordham, and Jessica Lincoln, chose to do their Capstone project here at Tree of Life.  Over the two weeks or so they put in over 65 hours of ministry work and special projects that gave them a comprehensive working experience of our five-branch model of sharing the love of Jesus Christ.  In our Food Branch they worked in the food pantry, delivered groceries to partner’s homes, and helped the kitchen coordinators with the Thursday evening community dinners.

In our Lifeskills Branch they worked with Justin Phelan and the English teachers helping those who are learning to speak English.  In our Relief Branch they worked with our special needs kids
in our Still Water’s program.  They were particularly effective working on a six-school teen clothing drive for our Shelter Branch.  We were blessed at Tree of Life to have their energy, insight, dedication to  task,

and overall enthusiasm for the two weeks  of the program and we will miss them greatly as they start their summer preparation for college.  God bless the three of them!

Partner Care

Hi!  My name is Shalufa Senga.  I’m a single mother with a 4 year old daughter and I’m blessed to be able to reside in Tree of Life’s transitional housing program.  I came to the United States in 2001 from the Congo region of Central Africa, and in May of 2016 found help with Tree of Life when I became homeless.

In Tree of Life’s programs, I learned to create a resume, learn to interview, and found a full-time job within a couple of months.  I had no transportation, and Tree of Life helped me by providing a loaner car, and eventually helped me own the car.  I have learned to support myself and my daughter and to save money for the future.

 

My weekly partner care group meetings with other ladies have been very helpful to me.  I learned to trust these groups as a safe place to voice my issues and listen to other’s issues and discuss together.

We have learned much from each other and from the Lifeskills training and
spiritual training that has been provided to us in these sessions.  I appreciate
how Tree of Life walks alongside us and helps us to become more independent
in our lives.  I look forward to this weekly time of connection with others
like me who are trying to improve their individual situations.

 

For me, I’m now in training to find a better job that has insurance and benefits
and pays a better wage.  I look forward to finding my own place, to giving back
to Tree of Life and others in ways that show my support for what they are
doing.  I thank God and Tree of Life for gaining an opportunity to better
understand who I am and where I’m going.  Thank you for the opportunity
to speak with you today.

 

LEESBURG REGION

HELLO FROM LEESBURG!

 

Our Tuesday night ministry at Crossroads Baptist Church is live and kicking!!

Our Community Kitchen ministry runs from 6pm as we ask volunteer host  groups to prepare and help serve a meal to our partners. During this time, we have a brief devotion and prayer of thanks to God for all His provisions, including the greatest of all gifts, the Lord Jesus Christ. Our last meal attracted 42 needy people from the Leesburg region.

 

Our English Classes then run from 7pm offering four levels of English classes throughout the building. From October through June we averaged about 20 adult students with childcare provided.

 

We try to come alongside all those who attend to show the love of Christ as fellow sinners and to discuss the concerns of their daily lives. During this time, we have a brief devotion and prayer of thanks to God for all His provisions, including the greatest of all gifts, the substitutionary death of the Lord Jesus Christ.

We have also held two special events since
our launch. Under our Christmas for Others ministry in December,
an original play/pageant based on Luke 1 and 2,
was presented by the kids

of Bethel Presbyterian Church. In conjunction with the pageant, we gave away hundreds of gifts provided by Toys for Tots, blessing kids from seven countries including Iraq and Syria.

In May we held a Clothing and Furniture Giveaway, serving more than 200 people with breakfast, clothing, furniture, and blood pressure tests. Our partners heard the gospel presented in a clear and succinct way, calling them

to repentance and faith in our Lord.

 

We are so thankful to God for this wonderful start at Tree of Life-Leesburg. Many thanks to Pastor Fuller and the members of Crossroads Baptist Church, and special thanks to the few, but faithful volunteers from a variety of churches that have persevered in kingdom service.

 

Change is part of every service ministry because of God’s providence in our lives. It has been a great privilege to serve with Paul, Wayne, Deb, Sandy, Beth, Colleen, Kevin, and several others throughout the past year. Other responsibilities are calling me to step back from a leadership position with TOL at this time, but I hope to continue to serve in some capacity in the future. Dell Nunaley will pick up the reigns as Regional Director, Leesburg with tireless energy no doubt. May the Lord continue to bless the important work of Tree of Life.

 

“He who oppresses the poor reproaches his Maker, but he who honors Him has mercy on the needy.” Proverbs 14:31. “The fruit of the righteous is a tree of life.” Proverbs 11:40a

 

WINCHESTER REGION

TREE OF LIFE-WINCHESTER is up and running!

 

Tree of Life has been serving a monthly meal at the Salvation Army Homeless Shelter for years, and based on this continual presence, we have expanded our operations into Winchester!  We are especially thankful for the many volunteers that continue to serve from the Purcellville area.

We are continuing our expansion by offering a free POWER lunch at the Evangelica Iglesia Jehova Sama Church at 812 Berryville Pike in Winchester at noon on the first and third Fridays of the month.  This will allow us to get to know more people and areas in which they have needs.

We continually desire to put relationship at the forefront of what we do, and it remains as one of our Core Values.

 

Future plans include a series of workshops and coaching activities based
on the most pressing needs of the partners we serve.  We are also eager to talk to churches in the Winchester area to determine how we can best work with them to meet their needs.  To find out how you can assist, please contact us at 540-441-7920 or i
nfo@tolministries.org.

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Tree of Life Center

210 N. 21st., Street., Unit D Purcellville, VA 20132

Operation Hours:
Monday - Friday:
9:00 am - 2:00 pm

Tree of Life Center

850 Edwards Ferry Rd NE,

Leesburg, VA 20176

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540-441-7920

 

info@tolministries.org

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