News from Social Action Committee (SAC) & 8th Principle Task Force:  December 2023

SAC & 8th Principle Task Force had only one request of the Board this month:

– that the January 7, 2024 First Sunday Share the Plate (STP) be collected to benefit The Retreat, headquartered in East Hampton, a nonprofit domestic violence agency serving Eastern Long Island.  The Retreat has grown from providing direct services to victims of domestic violence and sexual assault, their families to a 24/7 multilingual crisis hotline, counseling, legal advocacy, prevention education, and emergency shelter.  Anyone can reach support through the Suicide and Crisis Lifeline at 988.  For more information, visit their website; find The Retreat on Facebook and Twitter @RetreatDV.

Approved last month was our November STP collection to benefit North Fork Environmental Council (NFEC) who will be receiving a check in the amount of $ 175.  Thank you for your generosity on behalf of this local grassroots organization “dedicated to preserving the land, sea and quality of life” in this area of Long Island we all call home.

Our fall Food & Winter Clothing Drop to benefit CAST was held on Saturday, November 4th at the gazebo at Silversmith’s Corner Park, across the street from Southold IGA.  A lovely fall day started quiet and was looking like we’d we have more volunteers than donors.  The trickle became a more constant flow of people, including one who had “passed three times before running home to pick up some coats.”  We ended up with fun banter, Susan Johnson having to run home “to get more bags;” the usual rush of last-minute donations; and a mad dash to get everything into the cars without disrupting traffic too badly.  A few days later, Brian delivered to some happy CAST volunteers:  four large black plastic bags, one medium sized bag, and a medium sized box full of assorted winter coats and clothing.  In addition, there were four large shopping bags full of non-perishable foods and a small shopping bag of organic fruit flavored gummies…”and a partridge in a pear tree.”  Thank you ALL for your donations of food, clothing and TIME.  

Our upcoming, December 3rd STP was approved to benefit Rural & Migrant Ministry’s Amandla Education Center in Riverhead.  On the east end of Long Island there are over 1,700 rural and migrant farmworkers who live on and work the fields, wineries, and nurseries, providing us with the produce, plants, and wine that we enjoy from our region of the state.  Those farmworkers have families and children who watch their parents work long days to provide for them.

For the last few years, we’ve held drive-through/drop-off Toy Drives for the farmworker children during the holiday season.  Since our church parking lot is unavailable while our new building is built, we’re experimenting with an alternative that will allow us to continue our mission to care for each other and out greater community.  This year we will be collecting at worship services on the next two Sundays, December 3rd and 10th and delivering them to the Riverhead Center before December 15th.

SAC will then deliver the toys to some of the same teenagers that we met during R&MM’s Summer Day Program which is part of a larger R&MM leadership development program for teenagers named Voices of Long Island Youth (VOLIY).  The teens will then set up and run a holiday store where their farmworker families bring their younger siblings to select their preferred toys.  Rather than having the toys simply donated, parents pay a small fee to purchase items, thus allowing the parents to retain their dignity.  In addition, VOLIY uses this toy store to improve teen skills and the proceeds allow members to attend different workshops and other activities throughout their high school career.  This is a win-win-win.  Check your email OR in The Free Spirit for the flyer of R&MM’s “WISH LIST.”

Follow-up and Rescheduled Events:

– As you remember, the SAC showed documentary “Crossings” on the last Sunday of October.  Due to the emotionally moving content of the film and the need to leave earlier than usual because of another event scheduled at Holy Trinity,  Aiyoung generously offered to participate in a Zoom meeting with those who attended the screening.  We still plan to hold that event – details to follow.

– We have a special treat for the last of the Prophetic Voices series Part 5: “Spiritual Audacity – the Abraham Joshua Heschel Story.”  It turns out that Rabbi Heschel is the favorite 20th century philosopher of one of our favorite guest speakers, Rabbi Gadi Capela, who will be with us for worship and joining us for the film and discussion.

Date & time: Sunday, January 7, 2024, 1:00-3:00 pm (notice time change)

Place:  Holy Trinity Episcopal Church

– Next meeting of SAC / 8th Principle Task Force

Date & time – 2nd Wednesday of the month.  December 13, 2023, from 4:00-5:00pm

Place: attend either IN PERSON at Southold Free Library in the 2nd floor meeting room OR via Zoom link

In faith and solidarity,

Patte McManus, Chair           (631)997-9405           [email protected]