Service Learning in Community
“We become fully human, when we engage in the work of Creation”
Pastor Matt Lenahan, Growing Project founder
“Wittel Farm: Growing Vegetables for God and Neighbors” Video Link
Offered the first Sunday of each month, May-October, at 5:00 PM. Join us for fellowship, a picnic feast and Holy Communion. Attendance is limited to 40/week, and registration opens soon.
Join volunteers at the Wittel Farm, just outside Elizabethtown, PA, during the growing season of 2019. This ministry partnership between the Lutheran Camping Corporation, our synod, and Hunger-Free Lancaster County, the Growing Project reclaims a portion of the acreage gifted to the Lutheran Camping Corporation for its original use, farming. The crops harvested are donated to assist individuals and families in need through the partnership with Hunger-Free Lancaster County. To volunteer as an individual, or a multi-generational group, youth group or family, contact project director, Pastor Matt Lenahan at email@example.com, or check out the project on the Lutheran Camping website at: https://www.lutherancamping.org/wittel/growingproject/
Volunteers who assist on Wednesdays in the summer, may opt to travel to Grace Lutheran in Lancaster city on Wednesday evenings, to participate in their community meal, and to share produce from the farm in a “farmers market-style” with neighbors who attend the meal. In addition, the Growing Project will host a dinner-worship experience on the first Sunday or every month throughout the summer season, individuals, and congregational groups can join locals and other volunteers, to break bread and gather at the table for a meal and Holy Communion.
In 2018, five acres of farmed land yielded thousands of pounds of fresh food for local hunger programs, and in 2019, project organizers are planting up to seven acres. Volunteers are needed throughout the spring planting season, the summer, and into the harvest season!
How does service-learning qualify as Faith Formation?
As Lutheran Christians, we believe that to serve all people following the example of Jesus is a faith practice that we should all engage in. Our baptism sets us out on a lifelong journey that is characterized by our relationship to God, our relationship to our faith community, our relationships with various parts of our neighborhood and community, and our relationship to the wider world.
As we enter into service to, and with others, we deepen not only our relationship with them as our neighbors, but with God in Christ Jesus. The “practice” of service is one expression of our discipleship in action. Since faith formation occurs as we are living out our baptismal covenant in the world, tending crops at Wittel Farm, sharing in a meal at dinner-church with other volunteers, and sharing the harvest with people living with the realities of food insecurity and poverty, are all important aspects of our ever-deepening relationship with our Creator.
To learn more about faith formation “practices,” or for congregational resources related to faith practices, visit the ELCA website at: https://www.elca.org/Resources/Faith-Practices