As summer winds down, Bruen Chapel shifts its mission focus to supporting children, youth, and students.  In August, Bruen Chapel helps finance camp experiences for children with an incarcerated parent through the Virginia United Methodist Conference.  Children with a jailed parent face challenges ranging from financial and family insecurity to social stigmas to emotional distress that can take a toll on their development.  For a week at All God’s Children Camp, these children can be campers enjoying nature in a fun and nurturing environment.  From 2013-2014, we sponsored five children and provided dozens of cookies for snack time.

We believe that education is a critical part of developing our God-given minds and equipping us to make a meaningful impact on the world. We also know students need the right tools to succeed in class and that many parents struggle to provide these in an area with such a high cost of living.  To help prepare local students for going back to school, we organize a school supply drive and provide donated supplies to the Wesley Housing Development Corporation.

Portions of our offerings (called apportionments) support scholarships for undergraduate and graduate students in the United States and abroad.  By helping to cover things like tuition, books, and room and board, we enable students to gain the knowledge, skills, and degrees necessary to enhance their communities through their work in fields ranging from family pastoral care to rural development to clinical psychology to healthcare. Our apportionments also contribute directly to the operating costs of United Methodist colleges and seminaries, including historically black educational institutions like Meharry Medical College.

Finally, Bruen Chapel kicks off its autumn English as a Second Language term for adult students in September, which offers a chance to teach and meet students from around the world.  For more information about the ESL program at Bruen Chapel and ways to get involved in this key hands-on mission, please see here.