Dear Faithful Friends,
Glory to Jesus Christ!
As the reach of Covid-19 grows and impacts more of our communities and neighbors, the ministries of FOCUS North America will continue to serve, in Christ’s example, the most vulnerable of our brothers and sisters. Each of FOCUS’s Programs and Centers remain in communication with local health, social, and education officials. While we may have to adjust some of our methods, we intend to continue to serve the food, clothing, shelter, and fellowship needs in each of our communities.
The safety and care of those we serve, our volunteers, and staff, is our first priority. If you are someone who regularly interacts with FOCUS Programs, we appreciate your patience as you may experience shifts in schedules and routines. Please click the drop down menus below for up-to-date information related to your local FOCUS ministries.
Many in our communities are experiencing anxiety and uncertainty right now, and we ask that you would pray that God would give each of us strength and discernment as we all move forward in faith and in love. As the Body of Christ, we know that we have everything we need to quench any anxiety by replacing it with an agape love that sees the fullness of each person around us. Your continued prayers and support are felt and appreciated. Thank you for your unceasing commitment to these vital ministries, and we pray that you are in the midst of a peaceful Lenten journey.
Your brother in Christ,
Kenneth D. Kidd
Click Here to see other amazing online opportunities offered by various Orthodox ministries
Christ is in our midst! Praying that you are healthy and safe during this challenging time. We hope to offer you support and resources as we navigate the effects of COVID-19 on our communities.
Praying that you find peace through prayer, serving others, and seeking God and His will.
With love in Christ,
Katrina Bitar, YES Program Director
YES TRIP ONLINE! Sunday, March 22nd at 8pm ET Join us as we come together to celebrate the Veneration of the Cross. In the middle of Great Lent, we raise the Cross to give us strength for the remainder of the journey ahead and to remind us that the empty tomb is coming. Before the empty tomb we must follow Jesus Christ to the Cross. Let us carry our crosses together and encourage each other during this uncertain and challenging journey. PACKING LIST FOR THE TRIP: WORLD PARTY SIGN! On any piece of paper, make a sign to share with an encouraging message. MEAL SEARCH! If you are able, support a local restaurant and pick up food or have it delivered to you. Bring it to the Trip and we’ll eat together! PRAYER TOUR! Prepare a story to share about a person, place, or situation in your city that needs prayer. We will pray together for each other. REGISTER FOR THE TRIP! Click the image above and leave a comment on our Instagram post to register 🙂 We look forward to serving your city, and the world, with you.
Last Update 3/20/20
DONATIONS OF CANNED GOODS AND NON-PERISHABLE ITEMS NEEDED. Items we currently need are : canned meats like tuna and chicken, canned pastas, boxed macaroni and cheese, canned vegetables and fruits, and peanut butter and jelly.
Contents in a carryout meal:
MINISTRY SCHEDULE AND UPDATES (SUBJECT TO CHANGE)
Last Update 3/16/20
At this time, FOCUS Minnesota ministries continue to operate and serve those in need. Our school lunch program and weekly meals are both still operating according to TIER 2 guidelines below. We are currently NOT accepting donations of clothing. However food pantry donations are needed. All other donations are being bagged, dated, and quarantined for 3 days as a precaution.
Food Assistance Schedule, as of Wednesday, March 17:
** Sundays 5-7pm: FREE MEALS for take out at the door. Grocery assistance during this same period.
** Saturday, March 28, 10-11:30am: FOOD SHELF OPEN with pre-packed food bags offered at the door.
** Food Donations are still welcome.
To help ensure the continued health and safety of our guests, volunteers, and community, the following tiers will guide our program delivery during the outbreak. We are currently operating at TIER 2.
TIER 1: Regular sanitation of ministry areas. Volunteers wash hands before and after shifts and wear gloves while serving, in any capacity. All guests wash hands and/or use hand sanitizer upon entry of the building. If guests decline, they will be required to use gloves. We may modify the number of people we serve at a single time to decrease congregating in confined spaces. Weekly sandwich making and weekly general volunteer shifts will continue until further notice.
TIER 2: Further reduce congregation of groups by temporarily suspending regular food delivery services (Sunday Meals and Food Shelf,) and instead packing takeaway meals and pre-filled grocery bags, delivering to guests at the door. (This is our current tier status.)
TIER 3: Complete suspension of services in the case of a worsening health crisis in Minnesota. Regular activities will then resume when it is advised by the state and local health authorities.
Last Update 3/20/20
Last Update 3/16/20
OC Food Bank…Needs Volunteers!!!
Many senior citizens in Orange County rely on the free boxes of food they receive from the Orange County Food Bank. Over 25,000 boxes of food are prepared monthly by volunteers.
Given the current situation, over 520 volunteers canceled since last Thursday. Hearing this news from Andre Gaithe at the Food Bank, FOCUS served with Andre last Saturday at the Food Bank. 50 faithful volunteers worked non-stop and packed over 3,000 boxes of food. The Food Bank and FOCUS adhered to the recommended safety precautions and had fun working together knowing seniors will have food this month.
Today Andre Gaithe at the Food Bank contacted me and asked if we could send him more able bodies to pack boxes of food. I am therefore asking those who can from our FOCUS Family to serve at the OC Food Bank when they can. I am therefore asking those who can from our FOCUS Family to serve at the OC Food Bank. If you can serve on one or both upcoming Saturdays, clink on the link below:
Thank you,IreneIrene Basdakis, Esq.
Director – Orange County
Aliso Viejo, CA 92656
The Food Bank work is considered an “Essential Activity” (see health care order linked below). Food is a necessity of life. Without the preparation and distribution of the food boxes to senior citizens throughout Orange County, many will go without food. Of course no-one should work if their health is compromised, if they are age 65 and older or if they feel there is any threat to their health or to the health of others.
Last Update 3/23/20
Last Update 3/13/20
Work with FOCUS National Programs Manager John Moxen to respond to needs in your local area.