At the 2018 Synod Assembly Bishop Tracie Bartholomew challenged congregations of the New Jersey Synod to participate in a campaign to end world hunger “one cow at a time.” Every congregation that committed and raised $500 toward purchasing a cow through ELCA Good Gifts would receive a plywood cow for the congregation to paint and bring to the 2019 Synod Assembly. Our Sunday school children’s Noisy Offerings in 2018 have already enabled LCOS to make that donation and our cow is ready to be painted!
In Lent we want to go a step further and include the entire congregation in piggy- backing onto the Bishop’s Challenge by raising a Family Farm worth of animals through our Lenten Self-Denial Offer- ings. Lenten piggy banks will be given out on March 3 as Ash Wednesday begins Lent on March 6. Families are asked to put their change in the banks during Lent. If you are giving up something that has a cost we ask you put that amount in the bank instead. Our goal is $715, which enables a Family Farm of animals to be purchased. A cow, a couple of goats, a dozen chicks, two pigs, farming tools, seeds and agricultural training and support, for example, can help a family achieve a fresh start. With new tools and techniques, crops will grow stronger than ever. Eggs, milk and meat from the farm animals provide a lifetime of food to eat and sell on the market, helping a family escape the cycle of hunger and poverty – for good. If we exceed our goal we will purchase as many animals as the overflowing good gifts of generosity and grace allow. Hopefully we will get to “squeal” with joy when all the banks come in on Palm Sunday, April 14.