This Fall, City Church (STL) is partnering with Mission St. Louis and August Gate (a local church plant in our network) to serve the students of Peabody Elementary School, where 90% of the students are on the free or reduced lunch program. This Morning Reading Program (developed by Mission St. Louis and located at 2 other city elementary schools) is simple in its format and relational in it’s focus. Since January 2011, volunteers from both groups have been reading with students before class twice a week. That’s it. No specialized skills or tutoring certification required. The dramatic increase in reading ability (even over only 1 semester) has been matched only by the long term relationships being built with the school, the students and their parents.
As the Morning Reading Program has grown, so has the need for more volunteers. At our Sunday service on September 11, 2011, Todd Gentemen (Volunteer Coordinator at Mission STL and Pastor at August Gate) will be our guest and explain how we can participate in the Peabody Reading Program. Whenever we seek to love our neighbors, God will frequently use us to reflect His love in ways we cannot possible predict. As City Church joins this great work, we do so knowing that we are not merely reading with kids, but building relationships that God will work through to demonstrate His relentless grace.