Faith briefs from the area

Hays Daily News

Free gov't surplus food today

Free government surplus commodities will be distributed to qualifying individuals from 7:30 to 9 a.m. Friday, Feb. 5, and Friday, Feb. 12, if any food remains.

The distribution will take place at Unite Common Grounds Coffee House and Free Store (inside the Gamers Guild), 200 E. Eighth.

Food will be distributed on a first-come, first-served basis, said Brandon Nimz, Unite Ministry leader.  Recipients must meet income guidelines.

Commodities included in this distribution are anticipated to be grape juice, apples, pork patties, instant milk, orange juice, chicken fillets, chicken strips, chicken legs, split peas, brown rice, and cheese.

Income guidelines and future commodity distribution times are available at

Nimz may be contacted at (785) 259-2539.

Methodist youth plan Valentine’s Dinner fundraiser

The youth at Hays First United Methodist Church, 305 W. Seventh, are sponsoring a drive-thru Valentine’s Day Dinner to help fund their mission trips.

The dinners will be available for pickup between 5:30 and 7 p.m. Saturday, Feb. 13, in the church parking lot off Eighth Street, said Susan Jansonius, one of the organizers.

The menu for adult meals is roast beef, potatoes, green beans, roll and dessert.  The cost for adults is $10. The menu for children’s meals is hot dog, chips, applesauce and dessert. The cost for children is $5. Dinners are available to anyone in the community, Jansonius said.

Reservations are due by Tuesday, Feb. 9, by calling the church office at (785) 625-3408 or emailing Payment, by either cash or check, is due when orders are picked up, she said.

North Oak youth to hold banquet, auction

The Revive Student Ministry at North Oak Community Church, 3000 Oak St., will hold its annual Valentine’s Day Banquet Fundraiser from 5:30 to 7:30 p.m. Sunday, Feb. 14.

The evening will feature a meal, silent auction and inspirational message, said the Rev. Dustin Mulkey, youth pastor.

Tickets are $15 and may be purchased by calling the church office at (785) 628-8887. The reservation deadline is Wednesday, Feb. 10.

Proceeds will help fund the youth mission trip next summer.  The youth will be going to the Branson, Mo., area where they will do outreach and work on construction projects, Mulkey said.

Silent auction items will feature floral arrangements, date night kits, and gift baskets, he said. Those wishing to donate items to the silent auction may contact him at Childcare will be available the evening of the event. Social distancing protocols will be observed.

7,263 shoeboxes packed by NW KS

The numbers are in!

Operation Christmas Child announces that individuals in Northwest Kansas packed 7,130 shoeboxes during the November 2020 Collection Week.  Build a Shoebox Online totals were 133 shoeboxes, for a grand total of 7,263, said Rachel Albin, Northwest Kansas area coordinator

Operation Christmas Child is a ministry of Samaritan’s Purse, an international relief agency headquartered in Boone, N.C. Each year thousands of individuals across the country pack shoeboxes with small toys, school supplies and hygiene items.

These boxes are then collected and shipped to countries around the world where they are distributed to children in need.  For many of these children, this is the first present they have ever received. Each shoebox also contains a pamphlet in the child’s own language telling the child about the love of Jesus Christ.

Albin reported that the Lower Midwest Region, which includes Kansas, collected 623,408 shoeboxes.  The United States collected more than 7.8 million boxes.  Worldwide, more than 9.1 million shoeboxes were packed.

The 2020 coronavirus pandemic presented challenges for volunteer teams across the country, Albin said, and resulted in no-contact curbside drop-off of shoeboxes at collection sites.

“Though last year was very different, and we had to be flexible and creative to continue our mission of sharing the Gospel through shoebox gifts, I am so very honored to serve alongside each of you,” Albin said in her report to Northwest Kansas volunteers. “I want to commend you for your vision and faithfulness to the Lord.  We are still focused on the mission of sharing God's love with every child throughout the world.”

More information about Operation Christmas Child is available at    

Water quality poster contest entries

Children and adults living in Hays and interested in water conservation and water quality are invited to enter the 2021 City of Hays and KSU Big Creek Middle Smoky Hill River Watersheds Poster Contest.

Cash awards are available in each of the following divisions:  Pre-K through 5th grades; 6th through 8th grades; 9th through 12th grades; Fort Hays State University and North Central Kansas Technical College students; and community adults.  Professional artists are not eligible.

The theme of this year’s contest is “Let’s Talk Water,” said Stacie Minson, KSU watershed specialist. Posters must share water conservation or storm water (water quality) messages.

Entries must be horizontal posters measuring 12 inches by 18 inches on white poster paper. Entries must be submitted by Thursday, March 18, to school offices, Hays City Hall or the Public Works Department in Hays. Winners will be announced by Wednesday, March 31.

Entries may include pencil, pastels, charcoal, pen, ink, markers, paint, watercolors, crayons, cut papers, three-dimensional or computer-generated posters. Minson said that her office would provide certain supplies upon request.

She added that she and her staff are willing to make Zoom or in-class presentations about the contest, at teachers’ requests.

More information, creative ideas, and complete entry rules are available at Minson may be reached at (785) 769-3297 or at