Our Church's Calling:
"Love in Action: Our Church in Our Community"
What Do We Mean by “Love In Action?”
All of us long for the feeling of love – and many times we settle for just that. Nothing, we have discovered, can substitute for the joy and satisfaction and life-transformation that comes from practicing Love In Action. And that joy and satisfaction and life-transformation is what we as a church experience and effect in a host of ways – including …
Our Ongoing “Project Homecoming”
Project Homecoming is an outreach fund we have established through Bethesda Cares to those suffering from homelessness. Thanks to the generosity of our members and friends, we have housed for his first two years a gentleman who had been unhoused for 15 years – and now that he is self-sufficient, we are reaching out to provide a year of housing for a second individual.
OUR WEEKLY LUNCH AND CLOTHES CLOSET FOR THE HUNGRY
With the assistance of Bethesda Cares, we have provided lunch for everyone who needs it every Saturday for 30 years. And every Saturday for five years now, we have operated out of the Church House next door a well-stocked clothes closet for all our lunch guests.
Our Public Sanctuary Witness
In January 2017, we were the first community of faith of any kind in Montgomery County to declare our property a place of public sanctuary for undocumented individuals. We have expanded that witness to
- nurture our partnership with CASA de Maryland
- host trainings for rapid response to ICE raids
- provide accompaniment for vulnerable individuals to ICE appointments
- host DREAMers lobbying for full citizenship (pictured)
- participate in DACA rallies – one in which our pastor committed nonviolent civil disobedience.
Our Community’s 12 Step Clubhouse
The Del Ray Club, housing 65 12 Step meetings weekly with 150-200 participants daily (!), is located on our property.
Our Hospitality to and Embrace of our LGBTQ Neighbors
In our Statement of Welcome at the top of each Sunday’s Worship program, we boldly state and stand by this affirmation: “Bethesda Presbyterian Church is a diverse congregation welcoming all persons to serve Christ as full and active participants in our faith community, regardless of race, ethnicity, sexual orientation, gender identification, or any other personal attribute.” We are also proud that our pastor served 15 years ago on the pioneering national Presbyterian board whose witness opened the door for LGBTQ persons to serve in all levels of church governance – including pastoral ordination. (See “Welcome Statement from Our Pastor” for more information.)
Our Hospitality for the Women’s March on Washington
We provided shelter, food, and good church cheer for 25 Presbyterian women and men from Michigan who participated in the Women’s March on Washington in January 2017. Several of the women marchers led our Worship service that Sunday.
The Bethesda Central Farmers Market is located right next door!
Each Sunday, this market serves the food needs of hundreds of uptown residents – cheek-by-jowl with Sunday Worship and Education at BPC. We are proud to partner with the Farmers Market in providing Sunday hospitality in many ways.