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Year End E-Newsletter

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Dear FOCUS Supporter,

FOCUS-GWC This Christmas George, his wife and children were desperate for help but because of generous donors like you FOCUS NA was there. Thank you for caring and for your support before Dec. 31st!

Earlier this year, George’s house burned down. While his wife and three children now share a two-bedroom house with another family, George chooses to stay at a shelter to provide more room for his family and so he doesn’t burden their hosts. Working odd jobs helps pay for some of his families needs, but it isn’t enough to move them into their own apartment.

He likes going to the Sunday night meals at FOCUS Gateway City (St. Louis, MO) because, “People actually sit down and talk to me,” he says. FOCUS Gateway City serves all its meals “family style” so the volunteers sit with guests and everyone is served from the same bowl at the table. For volunteers it may seem like a small thing, but to people like George it provides a sense of “family” when one may be scarce.  Your gifts provide hot, nutritious meals, vital care and family for many homeless and hurting people like George and is lovely wife and kids.

Last Sunday’s Christmas party and dinner was no different. Families, single men and women, homeless individuals and those who work but still cannot pay for enough food to get them through the week … All sat together and enjoyed a hot meal, Christmas carols, and even presents. And George’s family was there too!

See the FOCUS Gateway City (St. Louis, MO), other FOCUS Centers and your gifts in action click here.

Help us keep families together and feed and care for those in need by making a tax-deductibe year-end gift today!

Blessed Nativity and Happy New Year,

fjm

Fr. Justin Mathews
Executive Director

PS - Charitable Giving IRA Legislation Is Back for 2010 and 2011 but you must act today!
It's official—the president signed the charitable IRA rollover extension into law, and it will be in effect for 2010 and 2011. Donors aged 70½ or older are once again eligible to move up to $100,000 from their IRAs directly to qualified charities without having to pay income taxes on the money. Read about the details on FOCUSNorthAmerica.org.
Your Gift made by December 31, 2010 may be deducted from your 2010 taxes. Please click the donate button in this email or visit www.FOCUSNorthAmerica.org to donate today!  For information on making a charitable donation of stock, other assets or from your IRA please contact Fr. Justin at 816-399-0909 today.

Board of Directors:

Mr. Charles Ajalat,
Chairman
Mr. William Hoeft,
Vice Chairman
Dr. Julie Papatheofanis, MD
Secretary
V. Rev. Fr. Tom Avramis,
Director
Mrs. Lory Barsdate Easton,
Director
Mr. Brian Gerich,
Director      
Ms. Georgia Kazakis
Director


Fr. Justin Mathews,
Executive Director
____________________________

Advisory Board

Mr. Andrew Natsios,

Chairman
Mrs.Theodora Polamalu
Mr. Peter Marudas
Mrs. Maria Foscarinis
Fr. Gregory Matthewes-Green
Kh. Frederica Mathewes-Green
Mr. Joel Smith

____________________________

For a Complete List of Our
Partner Ministries Click Here

Send Donations to:

FOCUS North America
PO Box 871578

Kansas City, MO 
64187-1578

Contact Us:

FOCUS North America

3101 Troost Ave.
Kansas City, MO 64109
United States

Email: This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it
Phone:816-399-0909 
Toll Free: 1-866-267-3083

Manage Your Communications:

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FOCUS FOOTER

 

Dec. 2010 E-Newsletter

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FOCUS North America Latest News

“House of Blues’ concert at Downtown Disney benefits Focus Orange County
FOCUS-OC-at-HOUSE-OF-BLUES

Over 1000 people attended the Dec. 3rd Disney House of Blues charity concert benefiting FOCUS Orange County and two other local charities. FOCUS Orange County collected 150 cans of food for the food pantry at El Dorado Motel, which makes the food available to the many working poor families staying at its motel and the neighboring Valencia Motel.

In November, FOCUS Orange County began its weekly meal ministry at the Valencia, where 100 meals are served each Sunday night by FOCUS volunteers. Working poor families may also receive clothing items that have been donated.

Stocking the El Dorado’s food pantry is just one more way FOCUS Orange County is working with area Orthodox churches to make sure that working poor families will not have to choose between food or shelter this Christmas.

Click Here for original article.

FOCUS Orange County providing food and hope for area’s working poor
FOCUS-OC-Meal
November marked the beginning of FOCUS Orange County’s weekly food ministry to the area’s working poor.  And its collections for a local food pantry will help insure that needy families will not have to make the difficult decision between a place to stay or food to eat. Click here to read more!

Theodora Polamalu "Restoring Living Icons" in Pittsburg and nationwide
FOCUS-PA
Join Theodora, a valued member of the FOCUS North America Advisory Board, for dinner and conversation on January 25, 2011, in Pittsburgh. Hear Theodora share how "Restoring Living Icons" helps Christians fulfill their Gospel calling to see Christ in others. Click here to learn more about this worthwhile event!

There is still time to Double Your Gift Today!
FOCUS
With your support in 2011, FOCUS North America hopes to have directors at all of our seven current FOCUS Centers, help even more people in need, double the number of students reached through the YES (Youth Equipped to Serve) program and support new partner ministries. Learn how your gift today can double in value to provide twice as much help! Click Here to read more.


Save the date: FOCUS NA at Saint Katherine College
st-cathrines
Fr. Justin, Executive Director of FOCUS North America will present a lecture at the St Katherine College Inaugural, August 29, 2011, on a life-long orientation to helping those in need. Click here to learn more about Saint Katherine College’s opening in September 2011 and their commitment to faith and service!


 

 

 

Board of Directors:

Mr. Charles Ajalat,
Chairman
Mr. William Hoeft,
Vice Chairman
Dr. Julie Papatheofanis, MD
Secretary
V. Rev. Fr. Tom Avramis,
Director
Mrs. Lory Barsdate Easton,
Director
Mr. Brian Gerich,
Director      
Ms. Georgia Kazakis
Director


Fr. Justin Mathews,
Executive Director
____________________________

Advisory Board

Mr. Andrew Natsios,

Chairman
Mrs.Theodora Polamalu
Mr. Peter Marudas
Mrs. Maria Foscarinis
Fr. Gregory Matthewes-Green
Kh. Frederica Mathewes-Green
Mr. Joel Smith

____________________________

For a Complete List of Our
Partner Ministries Click Here

Send Donations to:

FOCUS North America
PO Box 871578

Kansas City, MO 
64187-1578

Contact Us:

FOCUS North America

3101 Troost Ave.
Kansas City, MO 64109
United States

Email: This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it
Phone:816-399-0909 
Toll Free: 1-866-267-3083

Manage Your Communications:

Subscribe to Newsletters:
Un-subscribe to Newsletters:
Forward to a Friend:
This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it

 

FOCUS FOOTER
 

Nov. 2010 E-Newsletter

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FOCUS Blogger Update

A Great Thanksgiving Banquet!

“Everyone capable of thanksgiving is capable of salvation and eternal joy.” - Fr. Alexander Schmemann

Thanksgiving-photo

Once in seminary I was told that Fr. Alexander Schmemann used to say that Thanksgiving is truly the most Christian of all American holidays. I certainly agree! With all the family, food and warm thanks offered, one can easily imagine that our Thanksgiving meal is a foretaste of the Great Thanksgiving Banquet to come!

But for so many this week, Thanksgiving is a harsh reminder of the loneliness and overwhelming struggle just to “make it” that they feel every day...

This thanksgiving season FOCUS NA volunteers have helped to prepare and distribute Thanksgiving baskets and have served thousands of warm holiday meals.  They also have taken time to visit with those who would otherwise have gone without food or family.  I wish everyone could join us at least once to serve a meal in a FOCUS Center and see how thankful people are for what is offered and sit to listen to their stories first hand.  To be honest, I feel that the poor we serve are often so much more thankful for the little they have than I have ever been for all that I enjoy.  But times are hard and getting harder. That’s why we are so thankful for your generous gift today.

Because of your generous support this Thanksgiving, Orthodox Christians are uniting together to give hope to the hopeless! Here are three examples of how your prayers and gifts to FOCUS North America are making a real difference:

  • This Thanksgiving season, your gifts will provide hot, nutritious meals and vital care for homeless families and their children living in cramped motel rooms in Orange County, CA and homeless men and women on the streets in San Diego, CA and Orlando, FL.
  • This Thanksgiving season, your gifts will provide counseling and job assistance to new mothers struggling to find work and care for their new babies after choosing not to have an abortion in St. Louis.
  • This Thanksgiving season, your gifts will give warmth to the many cold by providing hot meals, shoes and warm winter clothing in Minnesota.

In the next few weeks, we will serve more meals and care for more people than at any other time of the year! While this means more chances to help change the lives of those we serve, it also means we need more help.

Thanksgiving-OC-Motel-Children

Would you share your thanksgiving for all God has given you by helping to provide hot, nutritious meals and vital life-recovery ministries for those in need through FOCUS North America?  Please click on the donate button in this email to give today.

Many times, those we serve simply need someone who cares to listen and a helping hand to regain their footing in life. The generosity of faithful friends like you makes it possible for this Thanksgiving to be special and keeps FOCUS North America’s doors open all year around. And that should give you a special thanksgiving too! Thank you!

Fr. Justin Mathews

Fr-Justin-Mathews-Signature

Executive Director

 

PS - We are so thankful for your generous support donated online today! Click on the following links to read an amazing story of your gifts in action at our FOCUS MN Center and to listen to our latest podcast interview with Mat. Vera Proctor, Local Director of FOCUS MN.

Board of Directors:

Mr. Charles Ajalat,
Chairman
Mr. William Hoeft,
Vice Chairman
Dr. Julie Papatheofanis, MD
Secretary
V. Rev. Fr. Tom Avramis,
Director
Mrs. Lory Barsdate Easton,
Director
Mr. Brian Gerich,
Director      
Ms. Georgia Kazakis
Director


Fr. Justin Mathews,
Executive Director
____________________________

Advisory Board

Mr. Andrew Natsios,

Chairman
Mrs.Theodora Polamalu
Mr. Peter Marudas
Mrs. Maria Foscarinis
Fr. Gregory Matthewes-Green
Kh. Frederica Mathewes-Green
Mr. Joel Smith

____________________________

For a Complete List of Our
Partner Ministries Click Here

Send Donations to:

FOCUS North America
PO Box 871578

Kansas City, MO 
64187-1578

Contact Us:

FOCUS North America

3101 Troost Ave.
Kansas City, MO 64109
United States

Email: This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it
Phone:816-399-0909 
Toll Free: 1-866-267-3083

Manage Your Communications:

Subscribe to Newsletters:
Un-subscribe to Newsletters:
Forward to a Friend:
This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it

 

FOCUS FOOTER
   

Oct 2010 e-Newsletter

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Newsletter Gateway-City-read-more MN-Readmore OC-read-more FOCUS-Donate-Now YES-Upcoming-events FJ-Speaks-Read-More
 

August 2010 E-newsletter

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FOCUS North America Latest News

Because of You, FOCUS Orange County Provides School Supplies and Shoes for At Risk Youth

This month, more than 300 church members from 6  Orthodox parishes and missions collected and distributed 350 backpacks filled with school supplies for underprivileged kids living in motels in Orange County.  In addition to the backpacks, 350 pairs of shoes were collected at shoe drives by the local Orthodox community.

On August 28, FOCUS Orange County will be grilling out for residences at the Eldorado Motel, a shelter for recently-made-homeless families. Also, beginning in September we will begin to serve weekly meals at the Eldorado Hotel or another similar venue with our mobile hospitality truck.

With Your Help, FOCUS Appalachia will Soon be Hosting More Short Term Service Groups

FOCUS-AP

The leadership team of FOCUS Appalachia will soon be inviting all of the Orthodox Churches from all jurisdictions in the Eastern time zone to send short term service groups to help out individuals and families in need in the area. A local girls’ mission that recently closed has given FOCUS Appalachia a dormitory to house volunteers. Our first teams will help with the rehabilitation of this building.

Thanks to You, FOCUS Minnesota Celebrates First Divine Liturgy in its New Building

FOCUS-MN

On Saturday August 14, 2010, with the blessing and cooperation of the Minnesota Eastern Orthodox Christian Clergy Association (MEOCCA), the Divine Liturgy was celebrated at the newly acquired center for FOCUS Minnesota. Five clergy concelebrated the Divine Liturgy, and we were honored by the presence of Fr. Justin Mathews, Executive Director of FOCUS North America, who traveled from Kansas City with his wife Matushka Jodi, to be with us that day. The premises were blessed, and following that a lunch was served to all. Approximately 40 guests from the neighborhood came to eat with us and share our table fellowship. Eleven Orthodox parishes were represented! This event served as an Open House for FOCUS Minnesota and officially launched our presence in the Twin Cities.  The Grace of the Holy Spirit has opened many doors for us already. A menu of services is shaping up for September that will include weekly AA meetings, a clothes closet, taking our free meals from once a  month to two times a month, an after-school reading circle, and a school-shoe drive. Glory to God for all good things!

Through Your Generous Donations, FOCUS Gateway City Continues to Expand Its Ministry

FOCUS GWC

St. Michael the Archangel Orthodox Church has generously donated to FOCUS Gateway City space for its ministry.  FOCUS Gateway City is now serving two community meals a month. It will soon be adding a six week money management class for women with crisis pregnancies already being served through its Employment Assistance Program and Working Wardrobe Programs.  The “Seniors in the City Work Day” program, where volunteers help seniors make repairs to their homes, is now happening one Saturday a month.

You’ve Helped Start Ministry at FOCUS Central Florida

FOCUS CF

Thirty-one volunteers from four local area parishes in Central Florida, as well as two volunteers who drove 120 miles, collaborated to prepare and serve a meal to more than 200 homeless on Friday, August 6. The team plans another feeding on September 24th.

FOCUS San Diego Continues its Weekly Meals, Thanks to You

FOCUS SD

Because of your help, over the last 30 days the Focus-San Diego team has engaged 120 individual volunteers from seven different Orthodox churches to set-up, prepare and serve more than 800 meals, collectively, on the four Wednesday nights during the time period July 15 to August 15.

YES Program of FOCUS North America Hosts Trip Leader Training Weekend

YES North America

The YES Program of FOCUS North America held a fruitful and joyful trip leader training the weekend of August 13-15, 2010.  Katrina Bitar, YES Program Director, invited 9 dedicated individuals to Los Angeles where they spent the weekend at the Fred Jordan Mission getting to know the ins and outs of the YES program and developing a strong community with each other.  We are blessed to have them as vital members of our ministry team as we move towards eight exciting trips this fall. Visit our website www.yesnorthamerica.org for more information on upcoming yes trips in the following cities: Ypsilanti, MI; Dallas, TX; Indianapolis, IN; Phoenix, AZ; Chicago, IL; Rhode Island and the Carolinas.

 

 

Board of Directors:

Mr. Charles Ajalat,
Chairman

Mr. William Hoeft,
Vice Chairman

Dr. Julie Papatheofanis, MD,
Secretary
V. Rev. Fr. Tom Avramis,
Director
Mrs. Lory Barsdate Easton,
Director
Mr. Brian Gerich,
Director      
Ms. Georgia Kazakis
Director


Fr. Justin Mathews,
Executive Director
____________________________

Advisory Board

Mr. Andrew Natsios,

Chairman
Mrs.Theodora Polamalu
Mr. Peter Marudas
Mrs. Maria Foscarinis
Fr. Gregory Matthewes-Green
Kh. Frederica Mathewes-Green
Mr. Joel Smith

____________________________

For a Complete List of Our
Partner Ministries Click Here

Send Donations to:

FOCUS North America
PO Box 871578

Kansas City, MO
64187-1578

Contact Us:

FOCUS North America
{domain.address}
Email:{domain.email}
Phone:{domain.phone} 
Toll Free: 1-866-267-3083

Manage Your Communications:

Subscribe to Newsletters:
Un-subscribe to Newsletters:
Forward to a Friend:
Opt out of Future Mailings:

 

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