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The Congregational Church of West Medford is now doing business as Sanctuary UCC.

‘Fill the Ark’ – Heifer International


A Practice of Daily Missions-Giving to Solve World Hunger

FTA-CALENDAR-COVERMedford, Massachusetts – May 12, 2013 – The Congregational Church of West Medford, UCC invites children and their families to “Fill the Ark” through a four week, daily missions-giving program that offers real-life solutions to world hunger and shows that one person, one family, one congregation can make a difference in today’s world. Along the way, families will have a chance to take a break from their busy lives to talk about their world family.

Rev. Wendy Miller Olapade, the new pastor of the church, is excited about bringing this program back to the community. “With Heifer International’s proven approach – more than 65 years in the making – we can help people obtain a sustainable source of food and income and teach our kids about loving our neighbors around the world! We love Heifer’s approach because it is based on the wonderful Chinese proverb, ‘If you give a man a fish he will eat for a day, but if you teach a man to fish he will eat for a lifetime.’ “

“But this project is also based in our faith and our human calling to love our neighbors and the earth. The story of Noah’s Ark and God’s rainbow with its promise of a new day of dignity and productivity has never been more relevant. The Ark is a powerful biblical image of a place of refuge against disaster when so many people in the world, including here in our own country, face storms of hunger and poverty. The prospect of a deteriorating environment and disappearing species is as real for us now as it was in the story of Noah! And the promise God made through the sign of the rainbow is a promise of grace, goodness and a new start. That says hope to everyone who hears the story–even the littlest children among us.”

Capacity Building for Poverty Alleviation Project (22-0531-20)Heifer Project International gives families food and income producing resources appropriate to their climate and culture, trains them on how to insure their sustainability and productivity and encourages them to pass on the gift to others their community. Whether it is sheep in the Navajo Nation, llamas in Latin America, camels in Tanzania, honey bees in Armenia, goats in Nepal, water buffalo in Nicaragua, or urban agriculture in NYC—all of the money raised will send blessings that help to bring an end to world hunger. All over the world, millions of people who were once hungry are nourished by milk, eggs and fresh vegetables. Families who for generations knew only poverty are building new homes and starting businesses. Children who once headed out to the fields to do backbreaking work will be heading into schoolrooms to learn to read. And people who never thought they’d be in a position to help someone else will be experiencing the joy of charitable giving.

The program begins on Sunday, May 19 at 10 am and culminates on Sunday, June 16 (Father’s Day) with a celebration of families led by the kids and a picnic. Each family will receive one ark bank and one four-week calendar. The daily lessons are done at home throughout the week, and contributions are collected each Sunday. As families fill their arks with coins, they will meet the animals in Heifer’s Ark and learn how these animals help families.

Each Sunday from May 19 through June 16, the church school curricula will offer an additional age appropriate lesson designed to teach children about people around the world, how extraordinary animals are to our well-being, how to enjoy our land without spoiling the environment, and what a gift it is to share!

Families are welcome to participate even if you cannot be with us on Sundays—just call or email the church office and we will provide you with a bank and giving calendar for you to use at home. 781-395-3360 or

About Congregational Church of West Medford
The Congregational Church of West Medford began in the mid-1860s and is an Open and Affirming congregation of the United Church of Christ. We believe God’s love and grace are offered to all and should be shared and celebrated by all. Therefore, everyone is welcome here and honored as a vital and integral member of God’s family.

Sunday Morning Worship and Sunday school are held at 10am. For more information, visit our website at:, call: 781–395–3360, or email:


Congregational Church of West Medford
Rev. Wendy Miller Olapade
400 High Street
Medford, MA 02155
Phone : 781–395–3360

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