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Our Ministries & Activities

Music at Portland

For eight Tuesday evenings in June, July and August an hour-long musical concert is held in the church parking lot involving a selection of local artists with a variety of musical styles. There is no charge however people are invited to make a cash donation to the North End Food Bank.

Friday Afternoon GroupOn Friday afternoons when the weather in nice you will often find a group of Portland women in the parking lot – some working on craft projects and some just there to visit and enjoy the followship. This group began in the summer of 2020 as a way of being able to connect while maintaining a safe distance in the fresh air and has continued ever since. We now gather in the Chapel during colder and wetter days, but the purpose is still to connect with others. All are welcome.

Book Club

The Portland Book Club has been meeting on the first Tuesday evening of each month for several years. Twelve to 15 women gather to discuss the book of the month and to enjoy the fellowship. We take the summer months off but during that time we can each suggest a book we would like to read and a list for the year is distributed each August. We have gathered as a group to enjoy watch parties of film and tv versions of some of our past books. In 2024 we will be able to do this in the Chapel with the addition of a large screen tv. New members are always welcome.

Clean up day
In the spring a group of dedicated volunteers come on a Saturday morning equipped with garbage bags, gloves and a good sense of humour to clean up the parking lot and grounds around the Portland building. This is done in conjunction with a city-wide spring clean-up effort.

Block party
Portland has held two block parties – in June 2022 and September 2023 – and invited our congregation and our community to join in the fun. Hot dogs, chips, drinks and cake are all on offer along with face painting, games and live music. The weather has cooperated, and we hope are pleased to welcome our neighbours to this enjoyable event.

Outreach Ministries

 

  • Christmas Bags
    During the first year of the pandemic the women from the Friday Afternoon Group decided to keep in touch with some of our more vulnerable seniors and shut-ins and to let them know that were thinking of them. We prepared bags with craft items, candy, including home-made fudge and a card. This practice has continued and is a welcome way to keep in touch.

  • North End Food Bank
    Portland members have supported the work of the North End Food Bank for several years by collecting non-perishable food, personal care items and other grocery products. We are aware of the great, and growing, need for this support in our community. During 2023 the North End Food Bank reported a monthly increase in the number of families that are relying on their services and Portland has tried to respond regularly in different ways. During Advent members are invited to use a “Reverse Advent Calendar”. One grocery item is listed for each day of Advent and all of the donations are delivered to the North End Food Bank in January.

  • Mitten Tree
    Each Advent season we have a Mitten Tree in the Church hallway. Individuals are invited to “decorate”  the tree with warm mittens, scarves and hats. Several of our women spend the year knitting these items however we welcome any donations. After Christmas the decorations are delivered to Centennial, Hazen White/St Francis and Princess Elizabeth Schools to be distributed to the students. In December 2023 the tree was full of items and the “harvest” totaled 175 pairs of mittens, 48 hats, 20 scarves and nine other warm items.

  • Prayer Shawls
    A group of dedicated individuals have kept busy knitting and crocheting beautiful Prayer Shawls for those in need of strength, comfort, peace, patience or even a celebration. These are available in the Narthex for anyone.

  • School Supplies
    Portland members contribute school supplies in August and September for children in our community. These many donations are distributed between Centennial, Hazen White/St Francis and Princess Elizabeth Schools.

Pancake Supper
Shrove Tuesday falls each year on the day before Ash Wednesday marking the beginning of the Lenten season. Pancake suppers have been a traditional celebration of this day and at Portland we invite all of the community to join us for pancakes, sausages, baked beans and home-made gingerbread with whipped cream for dessert. Beginning in 2022 there was no set admission fee, but we do welcome a free will donation from those who are able. 

 

Christmas Tea
For two years now the Portland ladies have put on a Christmas Tea and Social for the congregation and members of our community. This has been an extremely popular event with over 60 attending in December 2023. Fancy sandwiches and sweets are served along with tea and coffee and the tables are set in seasonable decorations. Santa Claus makes a visit and hands out presents to all who attend and the afternoon is completed with a sing song.

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