Outreach Ministry - New Pathways - Interfaith Hospitality Network, cont.


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Wednesday Worship:  6 pm

Trinity Lutheran Church, ELCA
1420 S 6th Street, Brainerd, MN  56401

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Outreach Ministry - New Pathways, Inc.
- (Interfaith Hospitality Network)

The Trinity Vision Council has made it a priority to reach out to the homeless...

...in the Brainerd lakes Area – to put our faith into action! Together with New Pathways, Inc - Interfaith Hospitality Network we will offer shelter, meals, compassionate care and support to families who find themselves suddenly homeless in our community.

Did you know that Crow Wing County has one of the highest per-capita rates of family homelessness in the state of Minnesota?  Hard to believe, isn’t it – we may not see these homeless families, but they're here - often living out of their cars and campers in parking lots and parks. Besides those already homeless, there are many families who are living "on the edge" financially, and all it takes is an accident or the loss of a job to put them out on the street with nowhere to go and nobody to help them.

How will it all work? A "Family Center" at 714 South Sixth Street in Brainerd is staffed with a professional social worker and staff. Families who find themselves homeless can apply for admission into the New Pathways - IHN program at the Family Center where the staff will screen them to ensure they are drug-free and have no violent or sexual felonies and that they are motivated to work hard in the program to address their issues that have led to their homelessness. Families admitted to the program use the Family Center from 8AM to 5PM, where the staff will help them search for permanent or transitional housing and address employment and other issues. In the evenings the families are transported to local network churches where they spend the night and are served meals by volunteers. That’s where we come in…

We may care for up to six families during our first host week. God has blessed us and we rejoice over the many people from Trinity who have stepped forward to volunteer their time, talents, and treasure during this week. Thank you! And guess what, members from Rejoice have graciously offered to team with us in this ministry too! All of our volunteers have been through a training to help them better understand how to serve our guests during their time with us.
The following people will be coordinating the many volunteers:

Co-Host Coordinators:
Andrea Bloomquist (828-8197 /cell 851-0467)
Doug Johnson (829-7381)
Co-Meal Coordinators:
Julie Jordan
Laleen Goerges (828-7892)
Set Up/Take Down Coordinator:
Bob Nibbe (825-7449)
Activities Coordinator:
Cary Jobe (828-1334)
Head Evening Host Coordinators:
Dale & Shelly Bolt (828-1351)
Overnight Hosts Coordinator
Doug Johnson (829-7381)
Transportation Coordinators:
Sheila & Corby Niemeyer (829-6705)
Supply Coordinator
Nedra Torfin (828-0554)


We are in a 13 week rotation with the following churches: 

  • Bethlehem Lutheran Church
  • Brainerd Area Catholic Churches
  • Brainerd Church of the Nazarene
  • Cross Lake Evangelical Free Church
  • First Congregational Church of Brainerd
  • First Lutheran Church of Brainerd
  • First Presbyterian Church of Brainerd
  • Lakewood Evangelical Free Church
  • Lutheran Church of the Cross (Nisswa)
  • Oak Street Chapel
  • Park United Methodist Church
  • Prince of Peace Lutheran Church
  • Society of Friends (Quakers)
  • St. Paul's Episcopal Church
  • Temple Baptist Church
  • The Journey North Community Church
  • Trinity Lutheran Church
  • Zion Lutheran Church

If you have any other questions about this important ministry, contact any of the people listed above – or speak to one of our pastors. If you have a desire to help those less fortunate than yourself and aren’t able to help in June – Trinity’s next host week will be September 2 – 9, 2007. Another training event will be planned a month prior to that week.
The Interfaith Hospitality Network program brings shelter, meals, and support services to families without homes.
IHNs are a cost-efficient, effective, and replicable community response to family homelessness. Because they make use of existing community resources, they can be implemented quickly, without major start-up costs.
IHN programs vary from community to community, reflecting local needs and resources.

Benefits... to the Guest Families

  • More than eighty percent of Network guests secure permanent housing.
  • Intensive case management by IHN Director to assist in housing and job searches and in meeting other needs.
  • Safe, homelike lodging where families can stay together.

Benefits... to the Community

  • Cost-effective mobilization of existing community resources.
  • IHN does not institutionalize shelter as a solution to homelessness.
  • Assists homeless families for about 1/3 the cost of public programs.

Benefits... to the Volunteers

  • Opportunity to make a difference in their own community.
  • Opportunity for families to volunteer together.
  • Range of volunteer jobs fits varying schedules, talents, and commitment levels.

Benefits... to the Congregation

  • Informs, energizes and motivates congregations.
  • Offers meaningful family-centered outreach.
  • Offers interfaith partnership.