• gretchenclaytonvia

Local Organizing Ministry (LOM) Teams' Update

During the Coronavirus pandemic, our LOM teams from St. Michael’s Catholic Church, Trinity Lutheran Church, and Christ First United Methodist Church have been focused on check-in phone calls with members of their congregations. They’ve been asking basic questions about the health & welfare of our fellow congregants and how they are coping with the situation we are all in.

Through our listening, we have discovered that peoples’ self-interest has shifted dramatically and is constantly evolving as we are isolated at home. We’ve heard many stories of financial hardships - job losses, problems signing up for unemployment benefits, and families going to the food pantry for the first time. Difficult home environments and health concerns- parents frustrated from homeschooling while working from home simultaneously, concern for high risk family members/loved ones, seniors who are fearful of getting groceries and people who are not able to see their doctor or have surgery because their health needs are deemed “not necessary” until the coronavirus crisis is abated. As these stressors weigh upon us, how does a phone call from a leader help? A common theme that leaders have verbalized is just how rewarding and needed these conversations have been: I ended up talking to this person for 45 minutes, they just wanted someone to listen! This senior doesn’t have a computer or the internet, her connection with the outside world is so limited and I was one of the few people she talked to this week. I’m really glad you reached out to me, I needed to have a normal conversation with someone other than my kids!

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