Com(e)passion Ministry

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Aton Abril and Mary Leano, Co-Chairs

Com(e)passion is a community development project to connect with people living in the communities of Japantown and San Jose and to build the loving community together through love and justice of God. We are currently operating more than a dozen community projects.

The Core team provides focus and guidance for the mission and ministry of the Com(e)passion Ministry. Please join our team and build a better community.

Volunteer Opportunities:

Grant Elementary School Reading and Homework Outreach

Grant Elementary volunteers help students in 1st -5th grade  with reading and completing their homework.  Volunteers are encouraged to build positive relationships with their students. This opportunity will guide students to achieve academic success through one-on-one reading, homework help, and most importantly building positive relationships with the students. You can either be a regular tutor assigned one student for a semester or a substitute tutor helping regular tutors when they are not available.  An introductory training will be provided. Contact Mary Leano (mary_leano@yahoo.com) for more information. 

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Grant Elementary School Community Outreach

We need your help to celebrate Grant’s Multicultural Festival in the Spring and Harvest Festival in Fall! These two events are fundraising festivals and all proceeds will go directly to the Grant Academy and Grant Performing Arts, which provide funds for children activities, such as camps, academic programs, and field trips. We expect over 500 families during the festival and need 30 volunteers who can run 15 game booths, including Fishing, Bowling, Miniature Golf, and Crafts. Contact Betty Hayashi (jthayashi1@gmail.com) for more information.

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Summer School Supplies Drive

Wesley UMC collaborates with local community groups and collects classroom tools for Grant Elementary School. You can make a difference in a child’s education by adding extra items to your shopping basket or by making a monetary tax-deductible donation to church (checks made out to Wesley UMC with “Tools for Schools” on the memo line). Supplies needed are glue sticks, black dry-erase markers, highlighters (pink, green, yellow), pencils (no. 2), and post-it-notes (any size and color). Contact Clarissa Johnston-Abril (clarissa.johnston4@gmail.com) for more information.

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Grant Elementary School Christmas Dinner

Join us to celebrate Christmas and the end of year with Grant families! We invite over 100 students and families and share our favorite potluck dishes with Grant school families. Last year, Wesley youth group (M.Y.F) operated the giving tree program and presented Christmas gifts to students.  Contact Mary Leano (mary_leano@yahoo.com) for more information.

Grant Elementary Los Dichos Classroom Reading Program

 “Los Dichos”, as a branch of Project Cornerstone and the YMCA, offers the opportunity for you to get involved in the academic life of the Grant Elementary students. Once a month you will read a book in the class of your choice and then help the students make crafts related to the book. Contact Mary Leano (mary_leano@yahoo.com) for more information.

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Tuesday Morning Coffee at St. James Park
Come and meet our homeless friends on Tuesday starting at 8:30 am at St. James Park. We meet at church at 8:15 am to carpool to the park. You will enjoy a one-on-one relationship with our homeless friends discovering their stories, hardship and daily needs. We serve about 60 people with hot coffee and a light breakfast every Tuesday. And we now have our "regular customers!" As we park, “the regulars" are there to help unload the car and serve together. You truly see God and His blessings in this ministry every time. Contact Mary Leano (mary_leano@yahoo.com) for more information.

St. James Park Picnic
Wesley has served the homeless at St. James Park for over 6 years. It has been a valuable and informative experience and touched so many lives- both volunteers and our homeless friends. Please join our Picnic every fourth Sunday of each month. Their stories will touch your heart and you will truly see images of God from each person whom you meet.  Please meet us in the courtyard/patio area after the worship service.

We accept donations of travel size soap, shampoo, conditioner, lotion, toothbrushes and toothpaste throughout the year. Contact Mary Leano (mary_leano@yahoo.com) for more information.

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Winter Faith Collaborative
The Winter Faith Collaborative is an interfaith movement that was formed to share ideas and advocate for the houseless community in the Fall of 2015. We have engaged over 75 faith communities across San Jose and Santa Clara County with the collective aim to serve and shelter those in the houseless community who are living outdoors. Wesley UMC provides dinner to 40-75 homeless people at Grace Solutions and Casa de Clara the first and third Wednesday of the month.  Opportunities to serve also are available.  Contact Mary Leano (mary_leano@yahoo.com) for more information.

Com(e)passion Cooking Teams
Wesley UMC provides dinner to 40-75 homeless people at Grace Solutions and Casa de Clara the first and third Wednesday of the month.  Opportunities to serve also are available. Contact Mary Leano (mary_leano@yahoo.com) for more information. 

 

Com(e)passion Food Delivery Service
Wesley UMC provides dinner to 40-75 homeless people at Grace Solutions through Martha’s Kitchen.  Opportunities to serve also are available. Contact Warren Uesato (wuesato@gmail.com) for more information.

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 Blessing Bags
Wesley park ministry team will be handing out blessing bags to the homeless people at St. James Park. help is needed to collect the items and pack them as Christmas gifts for 200 homeless individuals who have to live in the cold weather. Please help to spread the love of Christmas to our neighbors in the park! Contact Mary Leano (mary_leano@yahoo.com) for more information.

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Casa de Clara Laundry Angels
Casa de Clara is a Catholic Worker community, which is located on the 6th St. and Julian St. We offer a transitional housing to women and children experiencing homelessness, provide a mobile shower program, and distribute groceries to needy families in our neighborhood. Casa de Clara is looking for people who can pick up dirty towels from our shower service and launder and fold them at home. On average we have about 5 loads of towels that need to be washed, and brought back within a week. We also accept Monthly donations of household items like toilet paper, dish soap, women’s razors, sanitary napkins, deodorant, etc. The list will vary somewhat each month based on the needs of the guests. Contact Andrew Lanier (Andrew@sjcw.org) for more information.

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Wednesday Food Distribution to Latino Families
This is a joint ministry with San Jose First UMC. We deliver grocery bags to 120 Latino families in need in downtown San Jose. We are looking for a couple of volunteers who can sort out donated food items to the grocery bags and also deliver them to the families.  Contact Aton Abril (akenaton2@gmail.com) for more information.

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Joint Potluck Dinner with Latino Families
To deepen our relationship with Latino families in our neighborhood, we plan to have joint potlucks with First UMC’s Latino families four times per year. Sharing food is one of the best ways to learn and build relationships with people from different cultures. Please join our joint potluck dinner. You can taste delicious Mexican food and also share your favorite dishes with our Latino neighbors. Contact Mark Teagle (markteagle@wesley.net) for more information.

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Christmas Posada
Posada is an important part of Mexican Christmas traditions. The word posada means "inn" or "shelter" in Spanish, and in this tradition, Mary and Joseph's journey to Bethlehem and their search for a place to stay is re-enacted. This year, Wesley will celebrate Christmas Posada with San Jose First UMC. We will first meet at Wesley have fellowship with Latino families. Then, we will walk together to San Jose First UMC (you can drive if you want) and have Christmas worship service as well as dinner. Please join our joint Christmas Posada with Latino families in our neighborhood! Don't forget to bring a flashlight! Contact Mark Teagle (markteagle@wesley.net) for more information.

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ESL at San Jose First United Methodist Church
ESL at First United Methodist Church is an opportunity to help someone learn English.  This is a one-to-one or one-to-two ESL class.  The only requirement is fluency in English, though some working knowledge of Spanish is helpful. Contact Aton Abril (akenaton2@gmail.com) for more information.

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Jubilee Initiative Micro-Loan Program
Over 5 million American families are caught in the payday cycle each year and will pay nearly $3.4 billion in fees. Within those payday loans, 99% are taken out by repeat borrowers. Jubilee Initiative is one of the first ministries in our area to use small loans through the church to combat payday loans. Jubilee Initiative is a micro-lending program in California-Nevada annual conference in partnership with United Methodist Federal Credit Union.  We are currently looking for more members in our team who can help the vetting process and also have follow-up meetings with the borrower. Please join our team! Contact Aton Abril (akenaton2@gmail.com) for more information.

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Immigrant Accompaniment Team
Provide support to families affected by ICE detention, in partnership with St. Paul UMC and with assistance from PACT (People Acting in Community Together). Volunteers would set up a temporary support system to help a family facing the loss of their primary breadwinner. This team would come into play if and when a family in our area is identified to be in need of our services.  Contact Warren Uesato (wuesato@gmail.com) for more information.