Gladstone Park Church:
Committed to Meeting Community Needs
There is no mistaking Christ's call for His followers to be His hands in the community. In many cases, it is only after meeting the real physical and emotional needs of others around us that we can have the credibility and unique opportunity to share the convictions of our faith.
With that approach in mind, believers at Gladstone Park Church continue in numerous efforts to meet community needs. Most readers will recognize the impact of their highly respected annual ministry of "Follow The Star," as well as their weekly ministry of offering food and clothing through their Community Services Center. However, Gladstone Park Church is just getting warmed up, and have several other programs underway that are worth knowing about.
Gladstone Park Church is weeks away from finishing their first "Financial Peace University" program. Financial Peace University is produced by the well respected Christian entrepreneur, Dave Ramsey, and is a 13-week course, complete with textbooks, homework, and interactive class sessions. The class at Gladstone has met one night a week for several weeks now, and has learned the basics of money management, as well as strategies for getting (and staying) out of debt. Senior Pastor Bob Uhrig comments, "We consistently have had 35 to 40 attendees each night, and of these, 12 are non-members from our local community. It has been a blessing for the entire group to learn to better manage our finances and probably at no better time given our current economic picture."
As Gladstone's program concludes on April 7, they will begin a new evangelistic series at the end of the week on April 10. The series will be presented by Mark Wilson, an Australian evangelist, and will run for 6 nights per week for three weeks. Pastor Wilson is expected to share Biblical truths that emerge from a careful and scholarly examination of key cities in Biblical lands, including Babylon, Egypt, Antioch, and Tarsus.
Pastor Uhrig shares, "It is our hope students of the Dave Ramsey program also attend the evangelistic series, as well as draw from our surrounding community."
Not banking on hope alone, Gladstone has been blessed by the energetic efforts of Mission College of Evangelism. Based in Gaston, Oregon, and lead by Pastor Louis Torres, Mission College offers a training program for lay people and pastors to gain training in soul winning experience.
Pastor Uhrig reports, "In preparation for the Gladstone evangelistic series, 32 Mission College students have been in the community for a couple weeks, and doing door to door work, inviting the community to attend the series, and setting up Bible studies. These teams will expand further as a dozen of our Gladstone members team up with the student missionaries."
Further demonstrating their commitment to their local community, several members of the Gladstone Park Church have recently joined Molly Geddis' "Healthy Heart Team" in a local grocery store in the Clackamas area. The teams will be stationed there on the second Sunday of every month from 9:00 am to 5:00 pm, offering heart health screens, measuring blood pressures, and making recommends if necessary that individuals with high blood pressure see a physician. There will also be information available on upcoming health and stress reducing classes offered by the Gladstone Park Church.
On their first Sunday, 120 people were screened, and 51 of them signed up for a free cookbook, and information on upcoming health classes. While many had moderately elevated blood pressure, 5 people had dangerously high blood pressure yet didn't have prior knowledge of their condition. The Healthy Heart Team nurse recommended that those individuals make an appointment to be seen by their physicians immediately -- advice which could ultimately save their lives.
In another effort to aide their community, Gladstone Park Church has opened its doors to a ministry aimed at bridging the gap between the church and the traditional 12-step programs. ‘Overcomers Outreach' is a ministry born out of a deep need of a support system for individuals and families within evangelical Christian churches. Overcomers Outreach groups use the Bible and the "12 Steps of Alcoholics Anonymous" to minister to individuals who are affected by alcohol, mind altering drugs, sexual addiction, gambling, food and other compulsive behaviors or dependencies. "The key difference between Overcomers Outreach and AA is that we know exactly who the Higher Power is, and we know His name," explains Pastor Uhrig. Overcomers Outreach meets at the Gladstone Park Church on Tuesdays from 7:00 pm to 8:00 pm. Gladstone's Community Service Center is open weekly on Wednesday mornings from 9:00 am - 2:00 pm
If you would like to learn more about Gladstone's activities in the community, please contact Pastor Bob Uhrig at 503.655.2614.