Church Serves San Diego

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Church can happen outside walls. Lilla Marigza shows us how five congregations put their faith into action on a Sunday morning.

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(Locator: La Mesa, California)

Eighty-three-year-old Jean Ebbert of La Mesa, California couldn’t believe the offer…complete strangers wanted to come to her home and tend to her garden.

Jean Ebbert, La Mesa resident: “I can’t lean over anymore and I’m not steady on my feet anymore. They’re cleaning up all the dead roses and the weeds and the mess.”

John Kolb is among the volunteers.

John Kolb, Member, Foothills United Methodist Church: “This is an outstanding weekend. We’re working ‘Impact Sunday,’ where we come out in the community and bring the church with us.”

Jean Ebbert: “I can’t believe it. They’re being so thoughtful and nice. Thank you.”

From promoting animal adoptions, to cleaning up a wildlife park, members of five
San Diego-area United Methodist congregations spent a Sunday re-thinking what it is to be a church.

The Rev. Christian DeMent, Foothills United Methodist Church: “Church is much more than just a place people go to on a Sunday morning. Church is something we actually do, a verb instead of just a noun.”

No worship service…just a day of service.

Kimberly Vogel, Foothills United Methodist Church: “We’re just working to clear the path, clear it of debris, just get rid of any dead growth on the trail.”

Ken Lange, Foothills United Methodist Church: “You get a hundred, 200-300 people doing this, everybody puts in an hour or so, you accomplish an awful lot and you just make your community better.”

Church member Martin Moss spent the day touching up paint around the local elementary school. He hopes that others will be inspired by what they see.

Martin Moss, Member, Foothills United Methodist Church: “I think community members will see the church is involved and the church has quality people who are doing things and may want to get involved. That was not the original goal, but hopefully that’s one of the outcomes.”

(Music by orchestra on flatbed truck)

Voice of The Rev. Christian DeMent: “This is the beginning of something I think is going to last for a long time.”


For more information about how United Methodists are sponsoring events in their communities, check out the Change the World event page.

Also, see: ‘Impact San Diego’ creates recipe for success

Posted: April 14, 2010