Episcopal Diocese of Virginia
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What's That New Plaque in the Foyer?



(photo:  The Rt. Rev. Shannon Johnston congratulates delegates from Immanuel Church-on-the-Hill.  From left, Tom Kerns, The Rev. J. Randolph Alexander, Francine Wargo, Eileen Monnin-Kirby, Susan Gilbertson)


A new plaque is hanging in the Narthex, announcing that Immanuel Church-on-the-Hill has received the 2014 Bishop’s Outreach Award for “mission and ministries for those in need [that] give practical expression of exemplary Christian service and love of neighbor.”

The nomination from Immanuel focused on the annual autumn Pumpkin Patch fundraiser that involves the entire parish. Not only does this event support jobs and education at the Navajo Indian Reservation in New Mexico, but 100 percent of Immanuel’s profits are used for outreach, benefiting more than 20 nonprofit organizations that help vulnerable communities.

The nomination emphasized that Immanuel’s outreach efforts go beyond dollars:  “At Immanuel, outreach is not just a budget line — it is a guiding philosophy and one of the keystones of our community. We don’t simply write checks to worthy causes; instead, we leverage our financial resources to support programs in which our parishioners engage actively. We view community involvement as integral to our worship and fellowship.”

An endorsement letter from Grace E. (Beth) Wiggers, President of the organization of Region IV churches, further explained the impact of the Pumpkin Patch on the local community and said “The Pumpkin Patch makes friends while raising financial resources that are sorely needed and gratefully received in our community and nationally and internationally.”

The award was presented by the Right Reverend Shannon Johnston at the 219th Annual Council of the Episcopal Diocese of Virginia in Richmond, January 25, 2014.

Read the nomination of Immanuel Church-on-the-Hill here.

Read the letter of endorsement from Region IV here.

See the Bishop’s award here.

See the list of nonprofit organizations benefiting from 2013 Pumpkin Patch funds here.

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