Social Ministry

Habitat for Humanity Work Day June 17th

We are looking for volunteers to participate in our Habitat for Humanity work day on June 17thNo experience is needed and there are jobs for everyone age 16 and older.  What a great way to spend a summer day!  Our work-site will be 121 Main Street, Succasunna, and you can read about the families here:


Please sign up in Fields Hall, or contact Candice Snyder at: [email protected] or (973)945-4363 for additional information. We hope you can join us!




We are looking for volunteers to participate in our Habitat for Humanity work day on June 17th.  No experience is needed and there are jobs for everyone age 16 and older.  What a great way to spend a summer day!  Our work-site will be 121 Main Street, Succasunna, and you can read about the families here:

Please sign up in Fields Hall, or contact Candice Snyder at: [email protected] or (973)945-4363 for additional information. We hope you can join us!

Be Bold!

The annual synod assembly will be held June 6-8, 2019 in New Brunswick. Pastor Ingrid will attend as will the voting lay members elected at Zion’s annual meeting, Judy Bumpus and Emily Rochotte. The theme of this year’s assembly is “Be Bold” from 2 Timothy 1:7:

“For God did not give us a spirit of cowardice, but rather a spirit of power and of love and of self-discipline.”

How would you like to see Zion be bold in our proclamation of the gospel? And remember,

“Be strong and courageous; do not be frightened or dismayed, for the Lord your God is with you wherever4 you go.” Joshua 1:9.

Upcoming Social Ministry Initiatives

The LVCAP quarterly meeting will be held on Thursday, April 25 at Valley View Chapel. Attending from Zion will be our LVCAP rep, Lori Prussack, and Pastor Ingrid. LVCAP is planning a “Stock up the Food Pantry for Summer” event in May, so watch the newsletter for more information! Last summer we gathered school supplies for children whose families use the LVCAP food pantry and we would like to do that again this year. If you see school supplies (backpacks, paper, pencils, erasers, pocket folders, binders, divider sheets) on sale, please pick some up for our summer backpack drive.

Plastic-Less Lent

If you decided to join the fast from plastic this Lenten season, how is your journey going? You may be interested in this New York Times article:

Sue Koeppen also has a National Geographic special issue on the impact plastic is having on our environment ask her for a peek if you want some motivation! My own less plastic journey has made me more aware of how much plastic is integrated into everything we do. Here at Zion, we have made some strides – using cane sugar, paper or china bowls at our soup suppers and getting the old china coffee cups back in a cupboard where they are an easy alternative to the Styrofoam coffee cups at coffee hours. And Burt Horner is reminding us all to use our recycling cans more thoughtfully putting in those items that can and should be recycled, and taking care to leave out the items that our recycler will not accept. But even when trying to avoid plastic, up it pops! I wanted to serve bagels and cream cheese at the council retreat. The bagels came in a paper sack, but the tubs of cream cheese were plastic, of course. I am trying to remember the canvas bags (which I have in my car) for the groceries – sometimes I do and sometimes at check out I realize they are still in the back of the car! I have been asking for refills in my own travel mug instead of getting a disposable cup for a beverage when I am out and about (I only had one venue say they could not refill my cup – everyone else has been happy to do so). But however imperfect the attempt, trying to avoid some of the plastic we use each day does have an impact. Keep up your fast and let me know what challenges you have overcome.

Judy Bumpus


Ten quilts were pieced together, layered with warm batting, pinned, tied and bound along the edges on Saturday, February 9, 2019. Nine of these quilts were sent off to Lutheran World Relief (LWR). LWR sends our quilts (and the quilts from many other congregations!) to those in need – around the world or here at home. Quilts may be given out in refugee camps to people who have had to flee from their homes because of natural disasters or war or famine. A warm quilt can be protection from the cold night, or a privacy screen in a crowded refugee tent, a ground cover to give protection from the bare damp earth, or a swaddle for a baby or toddler. Some quilts are sent to those who struggle with disability or illness or chronic poverty. A quilt is a warm, colorful, tangible sign of God’s love. If you would like to see where our quilts end up, LWR does provide tracking. Go to the Lutheran World Relief website and enter our donor number (108668) and the bar code numbers of our two boxes of quilts (10866871060600 and 10866871060300). We can follow our quilts around the world!

One of our quilts was given to our own Ken Winterfeldt (left), a resident of Warren Haven Care Center. Ken had a beautiful smile when he received the quilt for this Valentine’s Day with a message of love and care from his church family.

Cutting the blocks for the quilts, finding fabrics for the backings, sewing the pieces together, pinning, tie-ing, and binding the ten quilts took many, many hands! Thanks to all who participated: Brian and Judy Bumpus, Marcia Davidson, Jance Denzler, Cathy DiLello, Mary Fiorello, Laura Hamilton, Marilyn Hibler, Jeanne Howell, Marcia

“Plastic- Less” Lent Challenge

This year the Social Ministry Committee invites you to re-evaluate your relationship with, and use of, plastic. At creation, God gave to human beings, created in God’s own image, the responsibility to toil and keep creation. We were to act as stewards to protect and nurture all of God’s creation. But instead of the earth flourishing under good stewardship, today we can often see the warning of Isaiah 24: 4-5 sadly coming true: “The earth dries up and withers, the world languishes and withers; the heavens languish together with the earth. The earth lies polluted under its inhabitants.”

Lent, traditionally a time to fast from things that distract us from God or to undertake a new discipline to draw us closer to God, is an opportune time to try a fast from some of our dependence on plastic and to return to our God-given role as nurturer of God’s creation. I know this can feel overwhelming! Plastic has permeated most areas of our lives. But plastic takes at least 450 years to degrade! Only 9% of the plastic ever produced has been recycled. Half of all the plastic produced is for single use products. So even by doing a little bit, many of us together can make an impact on this mass of plastic.

Here are some ideas to get started:

*Evaluate whether one needs a plastic product. Can you do without?
*Buy fruits and vegetables not packaged in plastic (this can be hard!) – and use non-plastic bags to carry your purchases home.
*Look for glass containers instead of plastic.
*Could you use bar soap instead of a pump plastic bottle?
*Say no to single use plastics like drinking straws, knives and forks and cups – carry your own reusable drink bottles and cutlery. Refill a metal water bottle from the tap. We are so fortunate in most places in the United States to have safe and healthy water available from our own sinks.
*Buy your laundry detergent powder in a cardboard box rather than liquid in a plastic bottle.
*Substitute plastic cling film with a product like Beeswax Wrap.
*Is your mind boggling at trying to get rid of lots of plastic habits at once? Try cutting out just one product this Lent (no plastic water bottles this Lent, for example). Or maybe try cutting a new product each week of Lent. By the end of Lent, you would have reduced your dependence on 6 plastic products! Or try focusing on weeding out plastic in just one room of your home – plastics in the kitchen or bathroom, maybe.

There are many resources online for using less plastic. Here are a few:

(This is a Lenten calendar for last year, but the challenges and information it gives for the 40 days of Lent are good.)

* (scroll down to the “A Plastic-Less Lent 2018” post) presents why lessening our use of plastic for Lent is a good Lenten discipline.

*Facebook has a page for Plastic-Less Lent.
*The United Nations Clean Seas group produced a funny Public Service Announcement last year. You can find it on YouTube. Look for CleanSeas Break -Up PSA: “It’s not me, it’s you.”

Each of us making small changes in the ways we use plastic can make a big change for God’s creation!


On Saturday, February 9th, we quilted 10 quilts to be sent to Lutheran World Relief! LWR sends quilts around the world to places affected by natural disasters, war and poverty. Thank you to Judy Bumpus for coordinating this wonderful project.


The Souper Bowl of Caring results are in! The Rams were the favored team at 122 donations, Patriots had 44 donated items. 55 donations were “undecided”. That’s 221 total items donated!! Monetary donations totaled $137.51. We also received 2 Shop Rite cards. All the food and monies collected will be taken to the food pantry- those who struggle with food insecurity in our community are the big winners! Thank you to all who donated, and to those Sunday School staff and students who helped at the services: Amelia Davis, Aiden Davis, Megan Davis, Luke Scudese, Sophia and Emily Stoma and Marcus Zwingle.