Merciful Presence: Noticing the injustices around us and playing an active role in serving the victimized.

Guided by Isaiah 58:1-10, Jesus’ relational priority of the “least of these” is expressed by the Body of Christ through mercy toward our neighbors. The beauty of the Gospel is that it is the only story big enough to make sense of life’s complexity and simple enough to be expressed powerfully through tangible mercy toward neighbors.  We endeavor not only to tell a beautiful story and respond to it in Spirit, but to live that story through merciful action.

To see this vision become a reality, our ambition must be to humbly and tangibly extend the love of Christ, especially to the overlooked.  Those who are systemically marginalized in North Brooklyn must find that in every expression of this church they are honored guests with reserved seats at the table.  And, those captured by the Gospel story must go on telling that story by welcoming the stranger, clothing the naked, feeding the hungry, visiting the prisoner, noticing the forgotten, and serving the orphan and widow in distress.  This is a vision that speaks to the deepest longings of every New Yorker:  A cosmic story to make sense of life, expressed in transcendent simplicity before our very eyes.

We seek to come alongside organizations that are serving those in need. We encourage our members to serve in some way at least once a month. Our Justice & Mercy Partners include: Rikers Debate Project, The Bowery Mission, St. Nicks Alliance, North Brooklyn Angels, North Brooklyn Neighbors, New Sanctuary Coalition, JustFix, Williamsburgh Library, City Harvest, El Departamento De La Comida, and Nomi Network. Learn more about each organization below.

To stay up to date on Justice & Mercy opportunities, please sign up for the email list below.


OPPORTUNITIES & Events with Our Partners

Full Justice & Mercy calendar here. Direct any questions to Deacons of Justice & Mercy, Holly and Sara.


Justice & Mercy Partners

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Rikers Debate Project

The Rikers Debate Project (RDP) teaches competitive debate skills — including communication, conflict resolution, and public citizenship — to students held in Rikers Island jail. A criminal record makes it hard to find a job, and communication skills are invaluable to overcoming this challenge. Volunteers do not need to have any previous debate experience to help facilitate these classes.

Serving with RDP
When: Saturdays (11:30 AM - 2:30 PM or 1:00 - 4:00 PM)
How: Sign up here. A leader will reach out to you a few days before with a brief packet for the week.
Church Contact: If you have any additional questions, please reach out to Cara Thurman who is a regular volunteer and our TGC Williamsburg point person.


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WILLIAMSBURGH LIBRARY

The original branch of the Brooklyn Public Library, built in 1903, Williamsburgh Library serves as a community education center with access to books, computers, and classes for everyone in the community. Volunteers can teach classes, help with after-school tutoring, do storytelling, and many other opportunities.

Serving with Williamsburgh Library
When: Opportunities to fit any schedule!
How: Explore opportunities and apply to volunteer here. Particular need for after-school tutors at the Williamsburgh Branch.
Church Contact: If you have any additional questions, please reach out to Holly Dowell, deacon of Justice & Mercy.


Image courtesy of North Brooklyn Angels

Image courtesy of North Brooklyn Angels

North Brooklyn Angels

North Brooklyn Angels is a grassroots group of neighbors helping neighbors with challenge faced in our community. They run the Angelmobile, a mobile food truck that serves hot lunch 5 days a week at various locations around the neighborhood. Meals are prepared at the Mt Carmel Parish Hall. Volunteers prep, cook, and serve lunches. This summer, we’re pitching in by helping collect and sort food after the McCarren Park Greenmarket.

Serving with North Brooklyn Angels
When: Saturdays, 2 - 6 PM
How: Sign up here for a slot (or many!)
Church Contact: If you have any additional questions, please reach out to Holly Dowell, deacon of Justice & Mercy.

Interested in serving during the week? Learn more here & access opportunities through the Deed app.


Photo courtesy of St. Nicks Alliance

Photo courtesy of St. Nicks Alliance

St. NICKS ALLIANCE

St. Nick's Alliance is a community development organization in North Brooklyn focused on serving low and middle income families in the neighborhood. Offering an array of services from elder care to youth programming, St. Nick's seeks to cultivate a community where everyone can thrive. Volunteers will be called on to help with community events, data collection for advocacy, senior care, and and allyship at marches.

Serving with St. Nicks Alliance
When: Both ad hoc and regular opportunities
How: Sign up for the email list and we'll share opportunities as they arise
Church Contact: If you have any additional questions, please reach out to Holly Dowell, deacon of Justice & Mercy.


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North BRooklyn NEighbors

North Brooklyn Neighbors is a grassroots nonprofit organization serving Greenpoint and Williamsburg to advance community-based solutions around environmental justice with a priority focus on land use, public space, resiliency, and environmental health.

Serving with North Brooklyn Neighbors
When: Ad hoc volunteer and advocacy opportunities
How: Sign up for the email list and we'll share opportunities as they arise
Church Contact: If you have any additional questions, please reach out to Holly Dowell, deacon of Justice & Mercy.


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NEW SANCTUARY COALITION

The New Sanctuary Coalition is an immigrant's rights organization based in New York City comprised of an interfaith network of congregations, organizations, and individuals standing publicly in solidarity with families and communities resisting detention and deportation. Volunteers can attend accompaniment training then come alongside people during hearings and check-ins. Other opportunities like case workshopping and letter writing also available.

Serving with New Sanctuary Coalition
When: Opportunities during the day throughout the week and in the evening on Tuesdays and Thursdays.
How: Sign up for a training here and after that you’ll be able to sign up for accompaniments
Church Contact: If you have any additional questions, please reach out to Holly Dowell, deacon of Justice & Mercy.


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JustFix

JustFix provides digital services to New Yorkers in neglectful housing situations and the housing advocates who support them. Volunteers help canvas neighborhoods to connect tenants with services and offer resources.

Serving with JustFix
When: Training to be held in the fall
How: Sign up for the email list and we'll update you when we have a date set
Church Contact: If you have any additional questions, please reach out to Holly Dowell, deacon of Justice & Mercy.


Photo courtesy of Simon Morris

Photo courtesy of Simon Morris

THE BOWERY MISSION

TGC Williamsburg leads a morning worship service at the Bowery Mission, one of NY's oldest homeless shelters. The Bowery Mission provides three free meals a day, and prior to each one they put on a service in their historic chapel, run by different churches from across the city. During the service we worship alongside the community there, pray for, and get to know the folks who attend.

Serving with The Bowery Mission
When: First Saturday of every month, 7:00 - 8:00 AM
How: All are welcome, no sign up required. Sign up for the email list for updates and reminders.
Church Contact: If you have any additional questions, please reach out to Simon Morris who coordinates the service and is a member of TGC Williamsburg.


Photo courtesy of City Harvest

Photo courtesy of City Harvest

CITY HARVEST

City Harvest rescues food from restaurants and markets around the city and re-distributes it in high need neighborhoods. Volunteers are needed to help out at Mobile Markets (closest one is in Bed-Stuy) and as Nutrition Educators.

Serving with City Harvest
When: Frequent opportunities throughout the week, no recurring commitment
How: Sign up for an orientation here and a City Harvest coordinator will be in touch
Church Contact: If you have any additional questions, please reach out to Holly Dowell, deacon of Justice & Mercy.


Photo courtesy of Kieran Murray

Photo courtesy of Kieran Murray

El Departamento De La Comida

El Departamento Del La Comida is working on food justice and restoration in Puerto Rico in the wake of Hurricane Maria. Former TGC member, Kieran Murray, is currently living in Puerto Rico and working with the organization.

Supporting El Departamento De La Comida
How: Follow along on with Kieran (IG: @northstarboi) and El Departamento (IG: @eldepartamentodelafood).
Church Contact: If you have any additional questions, please reach out to Holly Dowell, deacon of Justice & Mercy.


Photo courtesy of Nomi Network

Photo courtesy of Nomi Network

Nomi Network

Nomi Network is an economic development agency fighting human trafficking in India and Cambodia by providing training and job opportunities for survivors and women at risk of human trafficking, workforce and community development services. Former TGC member, Jasmine Summers, is currently serving a year-long fellowship as the network's first fashion fellow.

Supporting Nomi Network
How: Donate here and follow Jasmine (IG: @missjazz_mine) or sign up for her newsletter for updates.
Church Contact: If you have any additional questions, please reach out to Holly Dowell, deacon of Justice & Mercy.


Caring for the Immigrant

We seek to stand in solidarity and extend compassion to the immigrant families who are arriving at our border and living among us. The news about the treatment of asylum-seekers continues to break our hearts. Families are being separated and detained individuals are treated inhumanely, sometimes even dangerously. We know that God calls us to care for the immigrant, to acknowledge the Imago Dei in every single person. For those who feel called to respond to this situation, we have compiled a list of resources below to help you stay informed & know where to direct your resources.

Learn

Get Involved

New York City

  • New Sanctuary Coalition (one of our Justice & Mercy Partners) supports immigrants through accompaniment to their hearings, pro se legal guidance, and rapid response aid

    • If you spot ICE around the city, use the NSC hotline to report it: 903-884-HELP & 908-791-5309

  • Cayuga Centers are in need of Spanish-speaking foster homes. Call 718-860-1656, ext 1656 to learn more

  • Make the Road has a variety of volunteer needs including immigrant community outreach

  • Call federal and local representatives to voice your opinion in support of immigrant communities and asylum-seekers

    • Let your NY state- and city-level representatives know that you support the SCAR Act which helps to manage the tracking of separated families and requires data transparency

    • Contact your Member of Congress and ask that they support the GRACE Act which will establish a minimum admission number for refugees (95,000)

At the Border

  • Al Otro Lado needs variety of support in Tijuana, San Diego, Los Angeles, and other locations

  • RAICES has volunteer opportunities both at the border and remotely

  • San Diego Rapid Response Network needs volunteers in the San Diego area to help at shelters for recently released immigrants

  • Las Americas has volunteer opportunities ranging from administration to grant writing to professional services

Donate

Pray

  • For Intercession: God, as your beloved creation, we all carry your image and are deserving of dignity. You created us to be relational and in community, yet immigrants at our southern border are experiencing cruel, desolate circumstances, leaving them hurting, frightened, and feeling hopeless. Bring them comfort and peace in the face of their pain and sorrow.

  • For Compassion: God, we ask, as a church, for your wisdom. We pray for courage and compassion in our response to those who are seeking safety and hope. We pray specifically for the churches on the border. Imbue them with strength and love so they may serve the affected communities in a reflection of your abundant love.

  • For Justice: God, you are good and just. You feel our sorrow and know our grief. May your kingdom come quickly, here in our country and across our world. We long for the day you promised, when tears will be wiped away and unjust systems destroyed. Come, Lord Jesus.