We did it! It was three years in the making (thanks to Covid), but the inaugural Monfort Heights UMC/CDF Freedom School is in the books - and it was an incredible mission adventure. We served 15 rising first, second, and third grade scholars, teaching valuable reading skills, building up confidence, and pouring love into the little community we built. We hired four fabulous interns and an amazing site coordinator to help it run smoothly.
Each day we served breakfast, lunch, and loads of snacks. We also had over 30 read-aloud guests, and more than 60 people from our church and the community volunteered to make this mission possible. Thousands of dollars were donated and grants were secured. Obstacles were overcome and new connections were made in the community. Existing partnerships were solidified. New partnerships sprouted just from hearing about this great opportunity.
Prayers were poured out before this Freedom School was even named as a mission - prayers over the partnerships, connections, and people. These students and scholars were prayed for before we even knew their names, then even more so as hires were made and kids signed up.
This was transformational ministry - inside the church walls and beyond. There is a buzz of energy that is carrying us into what’s next. The Holy Spirit is on the move and this church family is here for it! Our scholars are more confident readers and leaders. These kids are looking forward to school and opportunities to grow their “big ol’ beautiful brains” even more. The scholars are ready to make a difference in their families, our community, and the world - and the faith family at Monfort Heights United Methodist Church is right there with them!
-Contributed by Rev. Angie Sherer
If you or your church are interested in holding a CDF Freedom School, email Sam Rodriguez at srodriguez [at] wocumc.org.