What’s your passion?
Ending homelessness? Combatting climate change? Connecting with underserved communities? Being involved in important domestic and global issues? Helping to minister to those in need in the congregation? Mental health? Here’s a look at some of the things we’re doing. You’re welcome to join us!
Peace and Justice Commission
Peace and Justice (P&J) works to fight the root causes of injustice by clarifying social issues and recommending the effective use of St. Mark resources. Activities include the non-partisan annual Great Decisions Foreign Policy series, Alternative Christmas Market, Bread for the World Offering to end hunger, working with immigration detainees, preventing human trafficking, and more.
Orange County Alliance for Just Change
Located on the St. Mark campus, the Orange County Alliance for Just Change (OCAJC) is a non-profit organization focused on working together for compassionate change. It empowers individuals, agencies and faith-based organizations within the alliance to create systemic, long-term solutions to communal problems affecting the most vulnerable and marginalized in Orange County. OCAJC has been focused on the homelessness crisis in Orange County, and St. Mark is one of the faith-based partners working with the #unitedtoendhomelessness campaign.
Nicaragua Covenant Committee
For 20 years, this committee has been involved in supporting the work of AMOS (A Ministry of Sharing) HOPE AND HEALTH in Nicaragua to develop and maintain rural health centers in various parts of the country. We are mainly involved in the health center in the community of Malacatoya in the state of Boaco. Members of the group lead a mission trip each year to work in Malacatoya. We also contribute to community development within CEPAD (The Protestant Council of Churches in Nicaragua).
CONGREGATIONAL CARE AND NUTURE
Our Health Ministries Commission promotes wellness and health in all aspects of our lives (body, mind and spirit), and the Care Team, Parish Nurse and Parish Counselor work together to support the needs of St. Mark members in their most vulnerable of moments. St. Mark is part of Hoag Health Ministries.
These volunteers provide loving presence, prayer and concrete support when emergencies or illness affect our members. They send cards, visit members in home or hospital, prepare meals, give support during medical appointments, and coordinate transportation. For more information, contact Louise Van Buren
Beth Schwartz, RN, is a valuable source for information, education and support. She coordinates CPR classes, monthly blood pressure screenings, the Red Cross blood drive, flu shots, lectures on health and nutrition, end-of-life issues, grief/loss and other topics. You can reach Beth by email.
Gretchen Weisenburger Carillo, a Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist (LMFT), is a resource for members for support, information and education in the area of mental health and well-being. She meets with members and visitors, providing consultation, crisis support and linkage to referrals and resources. You can reach Gretchen by email to schedule a confidential appointment.
CARING FOR OUR ENVIRONMENT
As Christians, we believe we have a moral obligation to care for the earth and our environment.
We demonstrate this on our own church campus, which was designed with energy-saving features and environmental sustainability in mind. We are certified as an Earth Care Congregation by the Presbyterian Church USA (PCUSA). We support organizations such as Presbyterians for Earth Care, the PCUSA Environmental Ministries, and the Orange County Interfaith Coalition for the Environment.
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