Pastoral Care

image159

Our ministry  includes the Shepherds of Grace, which is a lay ministry of  companionship, caring, compassion and support for members of Grace.  The  Lay Eucharistic Visitors are also part of the Pastoral Care Commission,  and these visitors bring the Eucharist to individuals who are ill or  home bound. The  staff person for this area is Fr. Benjamin, and he can be reached with  your pastoral care needs, news, suggestions at  graceepiscopaloffice@gmail.com or 813-971-8484, ext. 11.

image160

Homeless to Hopeful

Gas  or groceries? What would you do if you had to choose? Seriously. It’s  not an easy choice. 1 out of every 5 people living in Florida has to  make a choice like this every day. The circumstances differ, but the end  result is the same for families struggling to make it to their next  paycheck or for seniors living on a fixed income. Nutritious food is  hard to come by when your budget is limited. 

Poor nutrition makes it difficult for children to concentrate in  school. They get sick more often too. You just can’t ignore hunger.  That’s why we partner with Metropolitan Ministries the last Friday of  every month to provide hot, balanced and nutritious meals to all who are  in need in one of the poorest areas in Hillsborough County, north on  Livingston Ave from Fletcher Ave (dead end street).

image161

Lay Eucharist Visitors

As a Eucharistic Visitor you have the  privilege of bringing the Sacrament to those who cannot be present at a  public celebration of the Eucharist because they are ill, home-bound,  in a hospital or nursing home and  the joy of being one of the links that keep that person connected to our larger Grace family.

When  we meet with a home-bound parishioner, we often think that we are  “visiting from the Church” but, from a theological standpoint, it is  more correct to say that when you, as a Eucharistic Visitor, meet with a  home-bound parishioner, you are the Church.  Jesus told His  disciples that “when two or three are gathered together in My Name,  there am I in the midst of them.” [Matthew 18:19]   Whatever is done and  said during that visit will be “Church” for that person.  

If  you feel called to this ministry, please contact Father Ben or Nancy  Guss, or call the Church office.  We would love to have you!

image162

First Fruits Committee

Grace Church sets aside annually a tithe "off the top" in our giving to give back to the  "widows and orphans" we are called to help in the community.  We have  provided grants for scholarships for needy schoolchildren in the  Caribbean, a van for supporting troubled youth in Second Chance for  Boys, support workshops for the Tampa Bay Crisis Center, cloth for NICU blankets  and Little Dresses for Africa, whole family mission trips to the  Dominican Republic, and many other worthy causes brought to us by our  parishioners.  

We hope to continue this ministry by a continuing culture of tithing from our congregational giving.