“Fruit trees of all kinds will grow on both banks of the river. Their leaves will not wither, nor will their fruit fail. Every month they will bear fruit, because the water from the Temple flows to them. Their fruit will serve for food and their leaves for healing” - Ezekiel 47:12.
The Temple of Healing Waters COGIC ( http://www.healingh20.org) will hold its 6th Annual Red Sunday Celebration on Sunday, December 22nd, starting at 3:00 pm.
The 2013 celebration will be held at The Temple of Healing Waters (Healing H2O), 44900 Acacia Lane, Suite 105, Dulles, VA 20166.
Red Sunday is a way for the Church to give back to their community, especially those who are struggling during the Holiday Season. Healing H2O’s goal for 2013 is to feed 600 hungry people and the congregation is confident in reaching this objective with the support of the local community.
Healing H2O is also anticipating a surprise visit from Santa to help spread lots of holiday cheer to the young and old alike. Additionally, the INOVA Mobile Hope bus will be on site to administer health checks, immunizations and blankets for their guests.
The holiday events began as a vision given to Pastor Chad Carlton to feed and bless the hungry the Sunday before Christmas and call it Red Sunday. The first few years Healing H2O attempted to shop from a gift wish list provided from needy families. They then invited the families to the Church and distributed wish list gifts, a sit down hot breakfast and a holiday meal. The event evolved into feeding hot meals to the community and all those who came in need. In 2011 and 2012, Healing H2O partnered with Joe’s Café, an area restaurant, together serving over 300 hot meals to people and providing gift cards from local stores.
INOVA Mobile Hope has been a major partner with Healing H2O for the last 3 years and provides medical exams, flu shots, and blankets during this event. This relationship was established as a result of Associate Pastor Darice Carlton conferencing with the INOVA Team. Donna Fortier, the director of INOVA Mobile Hope agreed to support Red Sunday and Healingh20 actively began planning and promoting the event to the community and those living in need.
Food partners for this year include LINK food distribution program, Sultry Soul Food Restaurant and Healing H2O Members. Sultry Soul Food, in Herndon, will be cooking then delivering the food to the Church for distribution. These hot meals will be distributed on a first come first serve basis, beginning at 3 p.m. There will also be canned goods and other non-perishable items available. All are invited to receive food and gifts.
Healing H2O is also soliciting additional donations and volunteers via an online sign up. Adults and children of all ages are accepted as volunteers. Children are especially encouraged to participate with the Santa Station, engaging guests’ children in fun games. Local community groups and citizen representatives are asked to consider donating non-perishable items, grocery store gift cards, and/or other gifts in-kind. For additional information and/or to be a sponsor, contact The Temple of Healing Waters Communications Department at (703) 953-2817.
Founded by Pastor Chad Carlton in Sterling, Virginia, The Temple of Healing Waters COGIC is an International Church committed to fostering the principles of excellence, empowerment, restoration and healing that provides a biblical basis for personal achievement naturally and spiritually. Pastor Carlton’s ministry spans the globe, offering a renewed sense of hope to those who are lost and hurting. The prophetic ministry at The Temple of Healing Waters has been accompanied by signs, wonders and miracles being performed. Join them at their Sunday weekly worship service, beginning at 10:00 a.m.
“Be not forgetful to entertain strangers, for thereby some have entertained angels unawares” - Hebrews 13:2.
Adult and student Spanish speaking translators needed.
On Saturday morning (11/16/2013) at 8 am, LINK was ready to receive the first of its 890 registered families. When the makeshift church supermarkets (Christ the Redeemer Catholic and Trinity Presbyterian) and coat store (Sterling UMC) closed shortly after 4 pm, LINK volunteers had served 804 families (4,300 individuals). Each family received non perishable groceries to last 3 to 5 days, fresh produce, and frozen meat from Capital Area Food Bank. $21,860 in grocery card gift cards was also distributed.
Another 1,880 winter coats, 1,781 pairs of gloves and mittens and about 1,550 additional winter items were distributed to 428 families (comprising 2,000 people). Each family member received a coat, gloves or mittens and an additional winter item (hat, scarf, sweatshirt or pair of boots).
LINK received 21 walk-ins, or families who did not previously register, but came in desperate need of food. LINK provides these families with non perishables at the end of the day after registered families receive their allotted quantities.
LINK will repeat the process on Saturday December 14th, but will replace the coats and clothing with new toys. As of today, LINK needs about 4,000 new toys for children newborn through 16 years old and 45,000 pounds of non perishables. It is a huge objective, but one God knows we can meet and possibly exceed with help from our community.
500 volunteers helped in the week leading up to the Thanksgiving event and on the event day of the program. Typical volunteer activity includes food sorting, packing, food delivery, scheduling guest appointments, staffing the guest registration desk and acting as Spanish translators. Other volunteers coordinate the grocery gift card dissemination.
Volunteers are again needed to pick up food donations from schools during school hours located in Herndon, Sterling and Ashburn area and drop it off at either Christ the Redeemer or Trinity Presbyterian. This activity is required for the Christmas event between Monday, December 9 and Friday, December 13. LINK uses electronic volunteer calendars for many positions to make it easy for you to pick times that are convenient for you.
Suggested non-perishable food items especially needed include canned meats such as chicken and ham, peanut butter and jelly, spaghetti sauce, hearty soups and stews, canned fruits, baking mixes, boxed spaghetti, macaroni and other pastas, cereal, and canned or powdered milk. Additionally, toilet paper and personal hygiene products such as toothpaste and soap are always needed.
LINK is in need of baby dolls and toys for small children. The following is a list of recommended gifts that are in need for older children: sporting equipment such as soccer balls, footballs, and basketballs, trendy costume jewelry or handbags, personal hygiene sets for both sexes, hats, scarves and glove sets, backpacks, sleeping bags, board games, chess set, and DVDs of newly released movies.
When making donations, one nice toy ($10 to $20 in value) is preferable over many small, inexpensive items. We live in a very affluent community and the needy children that receive toys from LINK usually attend school with children that enjoy bountiful Christmas experiences.
LINK will also accept cash donations.
“The Kingdom of God is not coming with things that can be observed; nor will they say, ‘look, here it is!’ or ‘there it is!’ for in fact, the Kingdom of God is among you” (Luke 17: 20-21).
Saturday October 19, 2013 was a collaborative effort among community churches, government, business, civic organizations and local families.
Since Convoy of Hope, a 501(c)3 faith-based nonprofit, was founded in 1994 they have served more than 55 million people throughout the world through international children’s feeding initiatives, community outreach, disaster response and partner resourcing. Year after year, the organization has been lauded for their effectiveness and efficiency in mobilizing tens of thousands of volunteers for community outreach.
The objective is to always deliver much-needed food, supplies and emergency support to the impoverished and suffering. At Convoy of Hope (COH) the goals are to provide optimism and empowerment to needy people in the United States and around the world.
Each year in the United States, alone, COH organizes as many as 50 community outreach events with the help of thousands of volunteers who serve tens of thousands of guests. At each outreach free groceries, clothes, haircuts, job and health fairs, and activities for children are provided. In doing so, volunteers are given an opportunity to connect with members of their community, and guests are shown love and respect regardless of age, race, physical appearance, or spiritual condition.
COH believes in supporting the work of like-minded organizations throughout the world. COH comprises a dedicated and compassionate team of talented individuals who each bring a unique set of expertise and experience to the organization. Through partner resourcing, they have empowered hundreds of organizations by providing the food and supplies required to make a positive difference in each community.
See Raj K. Daniel Band at Convoy of Hope, Leesburg 10/19/2013.
COH – Leesburg began with a single church, acting as a seed planted in good soil. It only takes one church to see the vision and reach out to COH to engage with them. COH partnered with The Worship Center in Leesburg strictly for logistical and management reasons. Leesburg’s The Worship Center was willing to raise their hand, act as the anchor church and agree to partner with COH to initiate this Saturday October 19, 2013 event. Soon Cornerstone Chapel, Destiny Church and Centerpointe Church formed a core group and later other churches volunteered to support this incredible effort. COH gradually transitioned into a collaborative endeavor among community churches, government, business, civic organizations and local families to bring hope and emergency support to this community. As a result of Saturday’s event, recipients were connected with churches and organizations that collectively comprised the people, resources and programs required to assist 3,000 needy people.
According to The Worship Center church leaders, there were several important facets to achieving the outcomes for the proposed Outreach and exceeding COH – Leesburg original expectations. First and foremost there was a great amount of prayer. From the prayers of Pastor Joe Adams and the Worship Center assistant pastors in seeking guidance on whether to embark on the Outreach, to the prayers of the coordinators for assembling the right team of leaders to the prayers of the intercessory team to break down any obstacles and bring the appropriate guests and volunteers to the Outreach.
Second was the development of a phenomenal team of talented leaders from churches across the community whose passion to help those in need drove them to dedicate countless hours exceeding expectations in each of the areas of the Outreach. The team planned out this Outreach for nine months and they really felt like getting people from other churches involved was critical so recruitment began early on and each church brought tremendous skills and networks to get the job done efficiently and on schedule.
Third was the willingness of the Leesburg and Loudoun County Government, businesses, non profits and churches to trust COH – Leesburg when leaders told them about the potential impact this Outreach could have (even though many had never heard of Convoy of Hope) and to dedicate their time and resources to helping to execute an ambitious plan.
Fourth was the excellent leadership and coordination provided to the team by Convoy of Hope. They are a world-class organization and their help in planning and coordinating this Outreach was critical.
Fifth were the volunteers who gave abundantly of themselves. COH – Leesburg exceeded their goals for the number of volunteers they had at the event and every person truly believed in the theme for the day, “It’s not about me.” This attitude prevailed throughout the entire event as volunteers rose very early, worked extremely hard and regarded the happiness and satisfaction of their guests as the number one priority.
Total statistics from the event
Total Guest Attendance: 3,085
Total Volunteers: 664
Total Number of Churches Represented in Volunteers: Over 20
Total Number of Businesses/Organizations Represented: Over 40
Total Guests Prayed With: 2,300
Total Haircuts: 165
Total Family Portraits: 550
Total Flu Shots Administered: 230
Total Eye Exams Given: 91
Total Dental Screenings: 61
Total Pairs of Children’s Shoes Given Away: 1,500
Total Amount of non perishable groceries distributed: Over 35,000 pounds
Total Amount of fresh produce distributed: 35,000 pounds of carrots, onions and potatoes
Barbara Wilhelm, Intercessory Prayer Tent Coordinator provided the following reflections:
By its very definition intercession does not necessarily lend itself to a stable situation: some intercessors may spend their time in a prayer closet alone; others may intercede in group prayer; others may feel led as part of intercession to prayer walk. Most of the intercession for COH – Leesburg occurred before the Outreach ever took place. That Saturday was simply an extension and culmination of months of many other days of intercession done in many different ways.
Intercession is totally outward-focused. It is concerned with the needs of the people and the circumstances involved and more importantly, with the heart of God Who has led the endeavor they participate in. Psalm 149:6 instructs us that the “high-praises of God and the two-edged sword” of His Word, the Bible, are our “weapons of warfare” as we fight to bring people from places of hopelessness and need and into the Kingdom of Love and Eternal Life. Fittingly, therefore it was from the words of the Bible that we would receive instruction.
Isaiah 40: 3-11 instructed us to seek the Lord for every obstacle to be removed. Accordingly, we diligently prayed as non profits, churches, grocery stores, dentists, hair stylists, and community services were contacted. Incredibly we watched as the Lord not only fulfilled but exceeded our expectations. We witnessed the words of our prayers become reality because of the Living God behind them. 40:29-31 reminded us to encourage each other and so we did, especially as weariness was encountered. But it was not just our words that encouraged but the words and actions of God that empowered us.
The Lord began to fill the hearts of each intercessor and each worker that this Outreach was truly of His desire and His making. We learned that He had laid a burden on the heart of one of our intercessors almost a dozen years before this milestone event to begin praying that the people of Leesburg would receive the love He has for them. Repeatedly, we would find ourselves in passages of the Bible that spoke of His promise that He was with us: Joshua 6; Judges 6:6; Isaiah 43: 1-5; Isaiah 14: 24-27.
Almost from the beginning our intercession contained high-praises to God. These praises began to fill our hearts with a sweet certainty that we were doing His will and His desire was to so very abundantly bless. We found ourselves with a fresh understanding of the passage in 2 Chronicles 20 where the Israelites were attacked by a multitude of enemies and sought the Lord. The instruction they received: stand still and watch the Lord’s victory. So they did, and so did we. The Israelites went out and stood on a hill and sang high praises to God; so too did we. We had an intercessory prayer meeting comprised of numerous churches in the area and for the first 45 minutes we sang and praised. When it finally came time to close “in prayer,” even our prayers were simple – He knew what needed to be done. He would do it. It was His work and His desire.
From the beginning we had prayed that the goodness and love of the Lord for the people of Leesburg would be visibly evidenced through the groceries they would be given. We prayed for a real-life loaves and fishes event. Yet, near the end, we felt that God wanted to do even more. He wanted to provide leftovers (Mark 6: 43-44). And so He did! After providing over 3,000 people with groceries (we’d only expected 2,500), so much food remained that we were able to bless Mobile Hope and the Blue Ridge Food Pantry with the residual leftovers. There was not one promise God did not fulfill.
It was almost ironic how the tents were positioned at the Convoy Outreach. The Grocery Staging Area was configured to be last. All the groceries were free and there for the taking and were given with joyful and generous hearts. The groceries would provide food for the families. Yet the tent immediately preceding the Grocery Staging Area was the Connections Tent (prayer), where the Bread of Life was made available, the Living Water, Jesus – offered free, with a joyful and generous heart. The prayer of every intercessor was that this Gift was as equally well received as all the bags of groceries (1 Chronicles 29:11-13).
Jennifer Dial, volunteer in the Connections Tent provided the following reflections:
We had approximately 130 people ministering from 16 churches under the Connections Tent. The Spanish Speaking Teams from Iglesia Cristiano Nuevo Renacer (Leesburg) and The Community Church (Ashburn) were an 11th hour addition to our Connections Team. I didn’t know they were coming until the morning of the Outreach. They were a God send! Cornerstone Chapel (Leesburg), the Worship Center, and Church of the Holy Spirit (Leesburg) also provided Spanish Speaking Teams. These teams amazed us with their passionate prayers, relentlessness and endurance. They were non-stop. There were about 20 Spanish Speaking Members (representing about 15% of the total Connections Team), yet they ministered to about 65% of the 2300+ guests who came through the Connections Tent.
The church unity under the Connections Tent was particularly noteworthy. For many it was a reunion as many brethren jointly ministered in previous outreaches, attended cross denominational prayer gatherings, or participated in the annual Leesburg Bible Reading Marathon on the county courthouse steps. We were once again united in ministry. The event served to expand and strengthen the Christian network.
Tracy Yoder, Groceries Staging Area Coordinator, provided the following reflections:
I was exceedingly struck by the fact COH – Leesburg was going to allow churches in the area to be ministering to those who were hurting in our own neighborhoods; we were about to become missionaries to Leesburg. During the months previous to the Outreach, I was incredibly touched by the hearts of those I witnessed who longed to come onboard with us. Giant Corporate donated 2,500 recyclable bags, Harris Teeter in Aldie donated 8,000 grocery bags and a gift card. Purcellville and Catoctin Circle Giants gave us gift cards. Wegman’s donated $100 worth of bottled water. Keenly aware the cost of our event was going to be enormous, the generosity of those merchants demonstrated their support for our vision, something which exhibited to us that business believed in what we were going to accomplish. The greatest blessings however came through two conduits, the Giant on Battlefield Pkwy and the Blue Ridge Food Bank.
COH had prepared 5,000 bags of groceries for us to distribute among our guests, but we so longed to give in abundance, we didn’t want to stop there. When I approached the manager, Dawn McFarland, at Giant on Battlefield Pkwy, asking if she would be willing to help our efforts in any way, her response astounded me. She suggested we host a food drive the entire weekend before the event asking the community to donate items to our Convoy Event on October 19th. Dawn asked for a list of items we would need for our Outreach and made certain to order and stock an abundance of them so there would be many for customers to choose from. She then put the items at each register to remind the cashiers to ask people if they’d be willing to help.
Her generosity did not stop there, however! Her store is known for their generosity and all of the Giants in the area had been collecting $10 charity boxes during the summer months and into the fall. Customers could buy a box worth of groceries, so they could be donated to any non profit the store deemed worthy. The response Dawn received at her store was overwhelming!
Dawn staged a display of hundreds of donated charity boxes, filled with groceries in front of her store and promised us 200 of them. I was overwhelmed, but not as much so as the day we went to pick them up. There seemed to be multitudes of boxes, so many of them it took five trips to fill our vehicles and get them back to our church. When all was said and done, we counted 406 boxes all for Convoy of Hope! In addition, as a result of her suggestion of hosting a food drive, the Giant in Purcellville agreed to do the same, allowing us to collect well over 1,500 items for our Outreach!
The Blue Ridge Food Bank (BRFB) was another story. After speaking to Jarret Tomalsky, the Blue Ridge representative on numerous occasions, we arranged for a conference call with BRFB Senior Management. As a result of the conference meeting, both Ron Morris, COO and Michael McKee, CEO, arranged for us to receive over 35,000 lbs of carrots, onions, and potatoes! We were now going to be able to distribute both non-perishable and perishable, high in nutrition items as well!
The day of the event, two semi trucks parked in the Grocery Staging Area and unloaded more food than anyone could have hoped.
As people began filling in, we were able to give them more groceries than some of them could even carry! Volunteers assisted guests as they came and went and people’s faces lit up after exiting our area. My team of nearly 100 grocery staging volunteers worked flawlessly, selflessly, and happily to assist each of our honored guests in any way they could. During a lull in distribution, one of my volunteers ran and told me there were two teenage boys who had little to eat the past three weeks. We began to fill shopping carts with water bottle cases, fresh produce, non-perishable goods and anything we could get our hands on. Theirs was definitely the story which had impacted me the most. Before the boys left our area, I directed them to the Mobile Hope vehicle which reaches out to the needs of the homeless teenagers in Loudoun County. I told them they couldn’t leave until they met the director. Networking then took place and nothing could have thrilled us more!
Our desire on the groceries staging area team had been to not only give bread to those who came to visit us but to share the Bread of Life with them. God fulfilled our heart’s desire by His power at work within us to accomplish abundantly far more than all we could have asked or imagined.
Two weeks after the event Barbara Wilhelm said, “We became very aware as we prayed that the Lord has a great heart’s desire over this Leesburg area and that He wishes His light to shine even further. I know that His Word will not return void but it will accomplish all that He purposes. This loving movement has only just begun.”
Church of the Holy Spirit, Leesburg, VA
Cornerstone Chapel, Leesburg, VA
Destiny Church, Leesburg, VA
Faithway Baptist Church, Leesburg, VA
Free Life Church, Leesburg, VA
Iglesia Cristiana Nuevo Renacer, Leesburg, VA
Leesburg Community Church
Leesburg Nazarene Church
The Worship Center, Leesburg, VA
The Community Church, Ashburn, VA
Heritage Baptist Church, Ashburn, VA
Oak Grove Baptist Church, Sterling, VA
Western Loudoun Community Church, Round Hill, VA
Word of Life International Church, Ashburn, VA
Centerpointe Church, Fairfax, VA
Calvary Chapel Cumberland Valley, Hagerstown, MD
Participating Businesses, Civic and Government
1st Choice Women’s Health Center
Allison Bruno Music
American Legion Post 2001
Area Agency on Aging
Blue Ridge Food Bank
Blue Ridge Speech and Hearing
Bradleigh Mechanical - Sterling, VA
Capital Caring Hospice
Capital Party Rentals
Good Shepherd Alliance
Habitat for Humanity
Healthworks for Northern Virginia
Leesburg Police Citizens Support Team
Loudoun Volunteer Caregivers
Loudoun County Family Services
Loudoun County Mental Health
Loudoun County Prevention and Intervention
Loudoun County Workforce Resource Center
Northern Virginia Community College
The Home Depot
Travis Cutshaw Band
Volunteers of America/Loudoun Homeless Service Center
Wells Fargo Bank
"If any man desire to be first, the same shall be last of all and servant to all" (Mark 9:35).