What does community mean to you?
It has been said that you are a reflection of your community. What does your community look like?
Recently, the Board, staff and volunteers at Mission Thrift Stores spent some time reflecting on what community means to them. June 3-6, many volunteers gathered at their National Annual Meeting, where this community was celebrated!
Hebrews 10:24-25 (NIV) formed the theme for the conference, “And let us consider how we may spur one another on toward love and good deeds, not giving up meeting together, as some are in the habit of doing, but encouraging one another—and all the more as you see the Day approaching.”
In one workshop, volunteers were asked what the word community meant to them. A variety of responses were given — family, love, sharing, helping, fellowship, neighbours, caring. Each of these words help define the Mission Thrift Store community.
The word unity truly encapsulates what all these pieces of community are all about. We are united when we pray for each other. And when we pray, the Holy Spirit is present, and God’s work is accomplished. Acts 2 is one of the most beautiful examples of this.
There are currently more than 50 Mission Thrift Stores across Canada, in British Columbia, Alberta, Saskatchewan, Manitoba, Ontario, New Brunswick, Nova Scotia and Prince Edward Island. These stores embrace community in so many ways.
- Each day staff and volunteers pray for each other and for the needs in their community.
- Stores share much needed goods with ministries and service groups in their neighbourhoods, creating relationships that strengthen their community.
- They pray for the Mission Thrift Stores across Canada.
- They pray for the ministry work of Bible League Canada in communities in Canada and around the world.
- From time to time, volunteers visit international communities that are supported through their volunteer efforts. Recently we visited communities in Ecuador that were blessed and encouraged by our visit. But on a greater level, volunteers were blessed and encouraged to see that we all belong to God’s community locally, nationally and internationally.
This community that we belong to is helping to change lives, seeing communities transformed today and every day. All praise and thanks to God!