In The News
Story | Tree of Life Community Church
You Got Served!
Tree of Life Community Church did random acts of kindness to anyone in need. They hosted a worship service at a nearby assisted living facility, hosted a free brunch in the clubhouse of a local apartment community, and two dozen church members gathered their lawn mowers and weed trimmers and cleaned up 27 vacant homes...
Tree of Life Community Church in Elk Grove, a suburb of Sacramento, California, is a new church plant of about 100 members that meet in a local school. So when the church, led by Pastor Steve Steele, decided to close their doors one October Sunday and go into the community to serve, Pastor Steve felt it – financially.
“We didn’t have our church service – so we didn’t take up an offering. But God was faithful, I got paid a week later, and all our church bills were met,” said Pastor Steve. “More importantly, our Service Sunday really energized our little church, and helped us re-focus on the fact that we’re part of the Elk Grove community.”
Tree of Life Church planned for three avenues of community service: one was a one-time Service Sunday, with three separate projects; another would empower small groups to select and work in a community service project; and third would encourage individual actions through http://www.ugotserved.org (you got served!).
Church members were given silicone wrist bands inscribed with http://www.ugotserved.org to remind them to serve in their daily life. The site is hosted by the church for people who have been recipients of “random acts of kindness.” When members help anyone in need, they give away one of the wrist bands. For example, one church member helped tow a broken-down car to safety and then helped the family get it started. Pastor Steve changed a flat tire in the rain for two elderly ladies. The website also includes the plan of salvation and a link to the church’s homepage.
On Service Sunday the church engaged in three projects. One group hosted a worship service at a nearby assisted living facility, with parents bringing their young children for the seniors to enjoy. Another group hosted a free brunch in the clubhouse of a local apartment community, enabling neighbors who “drive in and drive out everyday, but never meet”, said Pastor Steve, to get to know each other and learn a little more about the church.
The third project was included in an AP article that ran in several local papers, and is still online at http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/21773482/ (end of first page and beginning of page 2). Pastor Steve explains, “Rising mortgage rates have caused a large number of homes – expensive homes – to be vacated in our area, as owners had to simply walk away from them.” Vandalism and crime have soared, home values are plummeting, and other homeowners are concerned. So two dozen church members gathered their lawn mowers and weed trimmers and cleaned up 27 vacant homes.
Tree of Life Community Church
P.O. Box 581105
Elk Grove, CA 92584
Steve Steele, Pastor