Our Community Garden The SJCG exists to support the offerings of the Martha Simmons Food Pantry while providing an environment conducive to teaching personal self-reliance, garden education, creation care, and community service. We grow vegetables by organic and sustainable methods, thus increasing the nutritional value of food distributed by our Martha Simmons Food Pantry. You can keep up with how our garden grows on our Community Garden Facebook page. Or Read more about this ministry on our Garden page.
Our Martha Simmons Food Pantry In 2020 our Food Pantry experienced a year unlike any other we had seen before. They spent the year distributing canned foods, dairy products, eggs, fresh produce, breads, sweets, meats, household supplies and personal supplies to their neighbors in McDowell County. When 2020 was all said and done, we had given out an astonishing 4,923 food boxes. With each weighing 50 pounds, that was - a total of 241,669 pounds of food! You can read more about ministry on our Food Pantry Page. Volunteers are always welcome. Just contact the office if you are interested, we'll be glad to give your name to our Volunteer Coordinator!
Pet Food Bank Every second and fourth Thursday from 2:00 to 3:00 PM volunteers meet at St. John’s, at the outdoor picnic shelter, behind the Parish House to distribute pet food. Some food supplies are donated by Manna Food Bank, but the majority comes from donations by individuals concerned for the well being of local animals. For a family with many pets a large bag is available. For those with just one animal, the volunteers re-bag small bags for distribution. Read more about this ministry on our Pet Food Bank page. Church of the Advocate The Church of The Advocate is a worshiping community that is a part of the Episcopal Diocese of Western North Carolina outreach ministry, welcoming all who wish to join in worship. COTA is based in the Undercroft of Trinity Episcopal Church in the heart of downtown Asheville, NC. Since it began in 1997, COTA has grown to become an integral part of Asheville’s safety net for the homeless and remains the oldest church-based homeless ministry in downtown Asheville. Members of St. John’s attend worship and serve lunch for Church of the Advocate’s congregation three or four times a year. Through a collective effort, the meal is prepared at St. John’s and transported to Asheville. After the worship service, volunteers from St. John’s serve approximately over 150 people. Read more about the Church of the Advocate on their website, The Red Door (you will be leaving St. John's when you click this link).
Prayer Shawl Ministry Our prayer shawl ministry started several years ago, with knitted or crocheted shawls being given to members or families in the congregation during a time of pastoral need (such as an illness) or celebration (the birth of a baby). The ministry has grown to include knitted caps being given to patients having cancer treatment, hospital newborns, and merchant seamen through the Christmas at Sea project. It continues today through the love and prayer of members who share their gifts of knitting/crocheting. Pastoral Care St. John's has a pastoral care team who helps our Rector in the ministry of prayer and presence. Members reach out to those in our parish who are experiencing illness, infirmity, or grief. We make calls, do home visits, pray, and send cards. A member of the pastoral care team maintains our prayer lists for the Prayers of the People on Sundays. If you or a member of your family is in need of prayer, please contact the office and let us know. If you would like to join the Pastoral Care team, or be considered to be a Lay Eucharistic Visitor once the pandemic is under control please contact our priest.