Outreach Ministry

For more information about our exciting Outreach Ministry,
please reach out to one of our Outreach Committee Members:

Avril Johnson, Marcia McKean, Kate Fuqua, Cathy Gibson,
Deb Pratt, Liz Klein, Kevin Walsh, and Jo Bronson.

Outreach at Grace in 2023

Sack Lunch Ministry

Free Little Pantry

St. Mary’s Guild – home-made quilts to those in need; women/children

Palestinian ETVTC Scholarship

Providing Church space for Support Groups

Trinity Cathedral Monrovia – Borehole Project

We seek to further Grace’s purpose of effecting transformational change in individuals, in our Portland neighborhoods, and in other communities near and far.  Trying our best to be the hands of Christ in this world, we seek to use the resources we have to take compassionate and effective action.  We do this by making (what we consider to be) the best use of our time, talent, and treasure to address current societal concerns, particularly those involving houselessness and hunger.

On Sunday, July 30th, Grace Memorial Episcopal Church’s Outreach committee concluded its scholarship fundraiser benefitting students at the Episcopal Technological Vocational Training Center (ETVTC) in Ramallah, Palestine. Parishioners showed overwhelming support for the two-year high school by contributing over $3,000, which will provide educational scholarships for three students in the coming school year. We celebrated this fundraiser’s success by drawing donors’ names and offering gifts contributed by our talented and generous Grace community. The donated gifts included Arabic music, original art pieces, Palestinian needlepoint, cookbooks, Mediterranean almond cake, jewelry and so much more.

Located in the Palestinian city of Ramallah, ETVTC was founded to fill a need for high-quality vocational training in the West Bank. The first high school two-year Hospitality program began in 2008. Since that date, the school has expanded to include programs in Information Technology and Culinary Arts. ETVTC students run the St. Andrews Guesthouse, where they learn all the aspects of working in a hotel, from reservations to checking in guests, cleaning rooms, preparing meals, and catering. In addition to receiving training for a career, the students are expected to meet all high school requirements for graduation; 94% of the graduates go directly to employment, additional training, or university.

Five years ago, ETVTC taught its first Culinary Arts program for prisoners that had committed non-violent crimes. The purpose of the program was to equip these individuals with skills to become active, contributing members of their communities. One of the graduates, who became a sous chef through the program later told his teacher, “You saved my life.”  After his release, he was employed and able to support his family, which is a major objective of ETVTC’s mission.

Today the school has expanded into teaching adults as well as eleventh and twelfth graders. ETVTC has a one- and two-year Culinary Arts program for adults wishing to start their own businesses. The Palestinian culture is changing, and women need to enter the workforce. They have discovered that baking at home and selling their products can help meet their family’s financial obligations while also caring for their children. The Information Technology Program for adults requires students to have a bachelor’s degree. More women are now becoming app designers, with the goal of being able to work from home.

The Episcopal Diocese of Jerusalem, which supports ETVTC, has a policy that if a student is unable to pay the $2500 tuition, the family will not be turned away.  This September, Jo Bronson, ETVTC volunteer, will travel to Palestine where she will work with Giovanni Anbar, ETVTC Director, in selecting the three students eligible for the scholarships. Once the students are selected, Jo will introduce them to us and keep the Grace community up to date on each of their journeys. – Jo Bronson

Outreach Ministry Meeting – August 17, 2023

Outreach Ministry Meeting – May 18, 2023

Outreach Ministry Meeting – April 20, 2023

Outreach Ministry Meeting – March 16, 2023

Outreach Ministry Meeting – March 2, 2023

Outreach Ministry Meeting – February 16, 2023

Outreach Ministry Meeting – February 5, 2023

Personal Outreach Story Focus:
Volunteering in Palestine – by Jo Bronson

Personal Outreach Story Focus:
Volunteering in Palestine – by Jo Bronson

“I first traveled to the Holy Lands in November of 2010.  As I walked around the Holy sites, I kept asking God, “What is my passion?  I have none”.  Two years later, God guided me to a small vocational school in Ramallah, Palestine.  The Episcopal Technological and Vocational Training Center (ETVTC) became my passion.  There I found potential high school drop-outs finding a career and even finishing their education and going on to university.  It captured my heart.  I have traveled nineteen times, to teach Conversational English to the eleventh graders.  I have been warmly welcomed and at the same time challenged.   Teenagers are the same the world over.  And they all have the same problems.  But, I do not know Arabic and most of the students that I work with — understand English but cannot speak it.  Hence, my job.  I find that a causal conversation asking them about their day, gets them talking.  

Goals for Future Outreach at Grace

Restart the “Friday Feast” at Grace:
a. First, Third and Fifth Fridays – Grace Memorial
b. Second and Fourth Fridays – Westminster Presbyterian

Sponsor Refugee families from Ukraine; other countries

Explore ways to work with other non-profit groups to help houseless and those in need

Creation/Climate Action Care – explore ways to participate in these area

7X7 – Art in different Churches – contact Myra Clark for more information

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