First Church is one of more than 1,000 faith communities across the United States that have designated themselves as “sanctuary congregations,” committing to stand with immigrants facing deportation and other unjust and discriminatory federal policies. Our Sanctuary Working Group is engaging in direct action on immigration issues and encouraging First Church members and friends to make their voices heard on this critical human rights and social justice issue. First Church also is a member of Sanctuary DMV and the DMV Sanctuary Congregation Network.
• The Second Sunday Offering on September 9 will support the Steinbruck Center at Luther Place Memorial Church at 1226 Vermont Avenue NW. The hostel-type dorm provides bunk beds, showers, and a dining room at low cost to many activists and Dreamers who have come to DC to engage in protests, rallies, and lobbying efforts to support immigrants and their families.
• The September Second Sunday Offering will also support the work of the Downtown Drop-In Center for Homeless Youth. Please give as generously as possible. For two years, First Church has partnered with the Downtown Business Improvement District and Sasha Bruce Youthwork to offer a drop-in center from 6 until 9 p.m. every Monday night. In addition to food, board games and movies, the center also offers screening for HIV and case management services to address needs related to education, health, job training and placement, and housing. Occasional programs are offered on a variety of topics, including art therapy, spoken word, nutrition education, and others. Most critically, at the church, young people find a place to simply relax and experience community.
Each week, 40 to 70 individuals aged 14 to 26 take advantage of the center. Together, we are demonstrating the love of God as we respond to the needs of this vulnerable population. For additional information about the Drop-in Center, please contact Rev. James D. Ross II, Minister of Justice Formation, at JamesDRossii@gmail.com, or any current volunteer.