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March 3, 2021

Reflecting Back...

Last week, I was going through photos on my phone, looking for pictures to use on Metro's new website (more on that topic in a couple of weeks!). Anyway, I came across this picture that I took on Friday, March 13 last year. I had stopped at Kroger in between work errands, and I was so overwhelmed by the crowd and the chaos, that I had to capture the moment.

While in line that day, I had multiple phone conversations. The first was with a Central District staff member, and we were talking about impending church decisions and how Metro might be able to help communicate those decisions. The other two calls were from individuals from two different churches informing me they had decided to cancel their respective Lenten events and asked if I could communicate the cancellations through Metro's email distribution. Later that day, a special update was sent out from Metro Ministries, and it was the first time food pantry information was shared, which has since become a permanent fixture in our weekly newsletter.

I had not thought about this day since it happened. I got busy, as we all did. Things started turning sharply and quickly, as we all began incorporating the word "pivot" into our thinking, if not into our daily conversations. Coming across the picture last week shocked me in a PTSD kind of way. I assure you I've not experienced anywhere near the level of trauma that so many adults, children and young people have, that many of you have, over the past year. But it triggered a bit of PTSD nonetheless.

I initially paused in grief for all that has been lost this past year (including one of the individuals who called me that day.) Slowly the grief turned to a feeling of gratitude and a sense of accomplishment - not my accomplishments, but God's accomplishments through each of us these past twelve months. Praise God for what has been done, how we have taken care of one another!

Along with that gratitude came a calming sense of hope, as I recalled a phone conversation with a good friend a couple of weeks ago. She and I had last gotten together in late February last year, where we had speculated about what might be about to happen with schools, businesses, churches and families. That conversation was dark, concerning, even fearful. But the recent conversation was hopeful and joyful, as my friend shared how her boys were getting back into in-person school and the positive differences she was seeing in them already.  We agreed to get together once we are both fully vaccinated. It is still going to be a while as she is much younger than I, but I am grateful to say I received my first shot yesterday!

So today, even though this photo triggered a trauma response for me and it may very well for you as well, I share it today to inspire hope and joy for what lies ahead. May we look back on the past twelve months, not just in grief and sorrow, but more so with a sense of pride and praise for having weathered this storm. Let us continue to take care of one another as we once again pivot.

Metro Lenten Moment

Today we are sharing about perseverance from the book of James, and our video highlights Scott UMC as a shining example of perseverance and persistence.  Click to view today's Metro Lenten Moment to learn more about Scott UMC's Generation 2 Generation Conference last year.

Check out our newsletters over these next several weeks as we continue telling the stories of Metro's 2020 Grant Recipients.

Getting Back to Lent Campaign

I am so excited and grateful to share that we are at 59% of our goal!!

Thank you to everyone who has contributed to our Getting Back to Lent Campaign so far. 

We are hoping to raise at least $4,000 towards our 2021 Grants program by asking folks to set aside at least $1/day during this season of Lent and make that a donation to Metro Ministries. You can click on the image above to make a donation now, or you may mail a check to Metro's office at 2560 Villa Avenue, Indianapolis, IN 46203. 

Thank you for helping reach our goal and for your continued support of Metro Ministries!

IYI'S Advancing Equity Summit March 18

Supporting equitable opportunities for all youth and children is at the core of Indiana Youth Institute's mission. In support of their mission, IYI is hosting the Advancing Equity Summit on Thursday, March 18.from 9:00  am - 4:00 pm. The summit is designed for Indiana youth-serving professionals and will offer a selection of workshops on topics such as immigration, racial justice, juvenile justice, the digital divide and more. 

Click HERE for event details and to register.

Scholarships covering the full registration cost will be provided to all Indiana youth-serving professionals. Business and church leaders are also invited to participate in the keynote and other portions, with a $25 processing fee. Youth-serving professionals who work outside the state of Indiana may also join in the learning opportunity with a $25 processing fee.

Grant Opportunity

The INUMC Diversity, Mission and Justice Ministries Team is making Ministry With the Poor Matching Grants available for Indiana Conference churches. The 2021 application window is March 1 - April 30, 2021. 

For criteria and more details visit THIS PAGE on INUMC's website.

Volunteer Needs with Society of St. Andrew

Society of St. Andrew Indiana has been organizing many of the USDA Farm to Family Food Boxes distributions throughout the state. They are currently seeking volunteers to help continue distributing these boxes in Marion County. Volunteers are needed Thursday mornings, 8:00 - 10:00 am.

To sign up for this volunteer opportunity, go to Society of St. Andrew's calendar.

There is also a GREAT NEED for a volunteer forklift driver to help load pallets in Beech Grove. If you are a certified forklift driver and are available to help on Thursday mornings, please call Ann Radtke at 317-607-0004.

The distribution will be drive-thru only with face masks and social distancing required. 

March Food Box Distributions in Johnson County

The last three Fridays in March, food boxes will be distributed at Grace United Methodist Church in Franklin. This distribution is part of the USDA's Farmers to Families program, initiated in April 2020. in response to the COVID-19 pandemic and is sponsored by Grace UMC, Purdue Extension, Society of St. Andrew and Michelle's Little Free Pantry.

The distribution will be drive-thru only with face masks and social distancing required. 

Indiana Rental Assistance Program

This Indiana rental assistance program is not open to Marion County residents. Click HERE for details.

The Marion County program is currently closed, however click HERE to sign up to receive updates and for links to Energy Assistance Program and other resources for renters.

Children and Youth resources shared in prior weeks:

Please let us know if you have resources to share!

These Food Resources will continue to be shared weekly here and will also soon be available on Metro's website. Please note the information on these linked pages is subject to change frequently. For the most current information, use the links rather than printed documents.

For Food Pantries and Community Meal information in Marion, Boone, Hamilton, Hancock, Johnson, Morgan and Shelby counties, click HERE.

Note: Mt. Olive United Methodist Church in Morgan County March pantry dates are March 15 and 26, from 2-6 p.m.


Metro Ministries, Inc.   2560 Villa Avenue   Indianapolis, Indiana 46203
metrodirector1923@gmail.com    (317) 452-4786   www.indymetroumc.org
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