As the economy affects people, one church has found a special way to encourage the unemployed — Concord Church gave out $50 gift cards. NBC 5 TV in Dallas reports, “Church Dedicates Sunday Services to Unemployed“:
A Dallas church directed its morning services to helping the unemployed through prayer.
Pastor Bryan Carter, of Concord Church said nearly all of his congregation's 6,000 members have been affected by the economic downturn.
Sometimes all a person needs to get through a difficult time is some positive words of encouragement, Carter said.
“Prayer changes you, but it also connects you with God, so it's through prayer that we're able to make it through some difficult times in our life,” he said.
Carter said prayer can help people deal with the pressure of being unemployed. But he also said those who are employed have lessons to learn from those who have lost their jobs.
“Sometimes God will allow us to go through a season of unemployment when we realize the difference between a want and a need,” Carter said during his 8 a.m. sermon.
Church member Tiffany Haynes, who is unemployed, said she heard Carter's message loud and clear.
“It means everything to come to a church that actually cares about its members actually cares about its community,” she said.
Concord Church gave $50 gift cards to Haynes and other unemployed members like Linda Abner Fitzpatrick.
“This brings tears to my eyes,” Fitzpatrick said. “This can be used to pay for prescriptions.”
She has been looking for work for four months and has no unemployment benefits.
“It's disheartening (to be out of work),” Fitzpatrick said. “So to have some one who really cares deliver a message to your heart — it's inspirational.”
“It's the small words of encouragement, it's the small tokens of affection to let you know you're not alone that go a long way,” Carter said.
Carter preached three sermons dedicated to the unemployed at 8 a.m., 10 a.m. and noon.
Have you heard of other churches that are doing something special for the unemployed? Add a comment below.
// DJ Chuang is a Director at Leadership Network,
launching digital initiatives, and connecting multi-site churches and
Asian American pastors.