The Minnesota and Dakotas Appointive Cabinets spent a long weekend in late July serving Spirit River Community in Isanti and the area around the United Methodist church. It was a way for Cabinet members to both give of their time and enjoy fellowship.
On Saturday, July 29, the Cabinets—which include Area Bishop Bruce R. Ough as well as the district superintendents and director of ministries for each conference—assisted with Spirit River’s signature ministry: its Matthew 25 food distribution. On the second Saturday of every month, the church distributes grocery bags of food to every individual who shows up at Isanti Middle School, no questions asked. Hundreds of people are served each distribution day.
That afternoon, Cabinet members heard from two founding members of Spirit River. The vast majority of the people in both the church and the community are at or below the poverty line.
On Sunday morning, Cabinet members worshiped at Spirit River Community. Bishop Ough preached on love, grace, and being adopted into the family of God, even pointing at several individuals and telling them directly, “You’ve been adopted.” He also commissioned Spirit River’s newly appointed leaders, Rev. Guy and Gail Sederski.
Then on Monday, July 31, the Cabinets worked outside in the heat—clearing away broken tree limbs, cutting away brush, and planting trees and several gardens on Spirit River’s grounds.
This is the second time that the two Cabinets have participated in a joint mission trip. In 2015, they spent time in hands-on mission service with the Native American community at Spirit Lake Ministry Center in Sheyenne, North Dakota. There, they led a “church camp” experience with about 40 children and teens each day, repainted pow wow grounds and re-built bleachers for the annual pow wow, and built a deck and ramp for a Native American couple.
This year’s mission trip was organized by Rev. Susan Nienaber, superintendent for the Minnesota Conference’s Big Waters District. Cabinet members stayed at ARC Retreat Center in Cambridge.
Minnesota Annual Conference of the United Methodist Church