This August, the AHUMC Hope Center and the Wesley Community Nurse from Asbury UMC formed a partnership, working together to help those in need in our community.
The mission of the Hope Center is to offer hope where there is little to be found. It offers financial aid and food, but more importantly, care and an ear to listen.
As San Antonio went into lock down due to the pandemic back in the spring, the Hope Center was no longer able to help people in person. However, thanks to one of their wonderful ministry partners, they were able to help people remotely. Ministry partner Ginger Brewer is working with people in need of assistance to help with their utility bills. Working from home, she checks the Hope Center voicemail regularly throughout the week and contacts all those who have left messages in need of help. She talks with them and assesses their needs. Many have either lost their job or their hours have been cut back at their job. She sees the Hope Center’s role as “trying to help people get over this bump in the road.” When someone is in need of utility bill assistance, Ginger is able to look into, with the recipient’s permission, their CPS account and directly pay a one-time assistance portion of their bill.
“God has plans for you, and they are for good.”
Ginger listens to each person she contacts and also prays with them. She tries to let every person she works with know, “God has plans for you, and they are for good.” She keeps her own list of people she has talked with who are in need of prayers and prays for them, often following up later. She says that people are so thankful and appreciative of the help that it has brought her to tears many times. What a blessing Ginger is to the Hope Center ministry!
In times when someone is needing assistance beyond what the Hope Center is currently able to assist with, Ginger either refers them to different references, websites, or agencies that may be able to assist. And one of those she might refer people to is the Wesley Community Nurse from Asbury UMC, Sonia Serna Gonzalez, RN. The Wesley Nurse program is a faith-community nursing program that provides holistic care – body, mind, and spirit – through education, health promotion, and facilitation of community resources. Sonia contacts people referred to her and helps them with anything she can, especially with connecting them to community resources that are available. Sonia said she is so happy to be helping people in any way she can. Being a registered nurse, she particularly tries to help people focus on their health. Often, when people are worried about things like their utilities and rent, they forget to pay attention to their health, so she brings that added dimension. She sees her job as helping people find what they need, whether that is help with rent, food, emotional needs, or maybe help with getting medication that is needed.
Sonia said she is so happy to be helping people in any way she can.
Since they started their partnership at the beginning of August, Ginger has referred 13 people to Sonia for assistance. Ginger said, “It is wonderful to work with Sonia and mesh together the two ministries. It makes our Hope Center stronger!”
Thank you Ginger and Sonia for your care for those in need in our community!