GPUMC wants every member to have an opportunity to use their gifts and talents in the way that is most appropriate for them. We are an active church, striving to serve individuals in need in both Grosse Pointe and the broader Detroit community.
American Red Cross blood drive
Every day, blood donors help patients of all ages: accident and burn victims, heart surgery and organ transplant patients, and those battling cancer. In fact, every two seconds, someone in the U.S. needs blood.
GPUMC hosts at least one single-day blood drive to support this ongoing need, typically in May.
Every summer, GPUMC collects dozens of backpacks and school supplies for children served by the Methodist Children’s Home of Detroit. Watch for a list of supplies so you can shop early for the best prices to support this worthy cause.
Boulevard Temple visits
United Methodist Women make regular visits to residents of the Boulevard Temple nursing home in Detroit. Each February, UMW members create Valentine baskets to ensure that those residents know that they are remembered and loved.
On its face, our annual Cookie Mart may look like little more than a very large bake sale. But, over the years, we have learned that making fresh, homemade cookies available just before Christmas serves many individuals who can no longer bake for themselves and still want a festive food during the holiday season.
Proceeds from the annual Cookie Mart support the ministries of the United Methodist Women.
GPUMC is an active supporter of the annual CROP Hunger Walk in Grosse Pointe and has served as the host for this event several times.
CROP Hunger Walks are community-based walk events held in cities and towns across the United States raising funds to support the global mission of Church World Service, a faith-based organization transforming communities around the globe through just and sustainable responses to hunger, poverty, displacement and disaster. Twenty five percent of the funds raised are returned to the host community to support local hunger fighting efforts Church World Service and organized by local congregations or groups to raise funds to end hunger at home and around the world.
Empty Bowls Detroit’s mission is to end hunger one bowl at a time. Each year, Empty Bowls holds a single event at Eastern Market’s Shed 5 to raise funds for Cass Community Social Services. Because dozens of restaurants and other businesses donate goods for the event, 100% of the ticket sales go to Cass.
Attendees will sample soups, bread, cheese, beer, wine, and dessert donated by local businesses all while listening to music played by Detroit musicians.
Everyone who attends receives a hand-painted bowl of their choosing as a reminder that Someone’s Bowl is Always Empty. This is an adult-only event.
Gift of Reading
GPUMC has had an active Gift of Reading program since the early 1990s. The program’s goal is to improve literacy by putting books into the hands of young readers.
In 2020, GPUMC donated books to build classroom libraries at an elementary school in Harper Woods, a neighboring suburb of the Grosse Pointes. In 2018 and 2019, GPUMC donated classroom sets of books to students at the Academy of the Americas in Southwest Detroit, which serves a high percentage of English language learners. For several years before that, the church donated individual books to students at Detroit Merit Academy, a charter school that sits on the border of Detroit and Grosse Pointe Park.
Hands with Detroit
Each October, the Greater Detroit District of the United Methodist Church sponsors a one-day, all-hands-on-deck mission project to focus on the needs of a single neighborhood in Detroit. The next Hands With Detroit will occur on Oct. 2, 2021.
Hope House tutoring
Read Around the Block (RATB) is a reading enhancement program to help elementary students improve their reading skills in a fun and safe environment. The RATB program is about connecting with local students, increasing their reading comprehension, and nurturing in them a love of reading.
RATB occurs from 4:15-6:15 pm Mondays and Thursdays. If you are interested in RATB, please contact the program office at (313) 887-0132.
Immanuel UMC Food Pantry
GPUMC maintains a regular food collection to aid families served by Immanuel United Methodist Church in Eastpointe, a near neighbor of Grosse Pointe.
A member of the Outreach Committee delivers boxes of food every two weeks to fill the shelves at the pantry. A list of suggested food items is available here.
Motown Mission is an urban work mission destination in Detroit for Christian youth, college, and adult groups interested in economic disaster recovery work in the name of Jesus Christ.
GPUMC has supported Motown Mission in a variety of ways over the years, often by providing a meal for a visiting group during the summer months.
The NOAH Project — Networking, Organizing, and Advocating for the Homeless — is housed at Central United Methodist Church in downtown Detroit.
NOAH serves people living on the street and offers lunch four days a week plus one-on-one social services, physical health counseling, empowerment-based programming, and emergency needs.
GPUMC supports NOAH by providing lunches twice each year, typically preparing about 300 bag lunches twice each year.
Palooza is GPUMC’s annual fundraising event solely for the outreach projects of the church.
Church members started the Palooza in 2007 as a way to raise money to support outreach work in New Orleans following Hurricane Katrina. The original Palooza was the Gumbopalooza which included a pig roast, dinner, and dessert auction.
Over the years, the event evolved into the Palooza — while still holding on to the pig roast. The spirit of the event has remained unchanged
Proceeds from Palooza have supported GPUMC mission trips to Haiti, flood relief, school lunch programs in the Grosse Pointe Public Schools, and many more projects over the years.
The United Methodist Women organize two rummages sales each year — in the spring and fall — to both serve and care. Church members value the opportunity to clean closets and share with those in need. The sales also enable many men and women to find good quality clothing and household goods at very affordable prices.
Proceeds from the rummage sales support the ministries of the United Methodist Women.
Scott Center meals
GPUMC serves at least one dinner a year to homeless men and women served by Cass Community Social Services.
Cass Community Social Services partners with local churches to provide a rotating shelter for homeless men and women. The rotating shelter is open from November to April and provides breakfast, a bag lunch, dinner, and a clean, safe place to sleep. Individuals served by the shelter sleep at the partner church then travel by bus from the church to Cass each morning after breakfast and return in time for dinner each night.
Through a partnership with Grosse Pointe Memorial Church, GPUMC was able to cook and serve a dinner during Memorial Church’s Shelter Week for several years.
In 2020, GPUMC was able to house about 40 men and women during its own Shelter Week. In 2021, due to the pandemic, no churches were able to provide shelter, but GPUMC did provide three meals a day for one week for about 50 men and women being served by Cass.
United Methodist Women
United Methodist Women is the largest denominational faith organization for women with about 800,000 members whose mission is fostering spiritual growth, developing leaders and advocating for justice.
The GPUMC chapter of UMW fosters fellowship through each of its fundraising activities. Each year, UMW sponsors two rummage sales that raise substantial amounts of money for the church and for other missions. The Cookie Mart and the Soup Suppers, likewise, bring together women who enjoy being with each other and value the opportunity to raise funds to support UMW’s work in the local community and beyond.
All Methodist women are considered part of UMW.