Faith briefs: Online cooking show fundraiser to benefit First Call

Linn Ann Huntington
Special to Hays Daily News

Chefs from three local businesses are teaming up with First Call for Help, 607 E. 13th, as they “cook up” an on-line fundraiser.

The “Chef’s Cuisine” fundraiser will be a virtual cooking show, with all proceeds benefiting First Call’s First Step Housing Project.

First Step will provide temporary housing to individuals living in Ellis County who are struggling with homelessness and who are committed to overcoming obstacles to secure housing in the future, according to the organization’s website.

Construction is ongoing at the First Call facility to create four bedrooms with a private bathroom in each. The project will offer temporary housing for eight to 12 individuals or families for up to six months.

Laura Shoaf, the fundraiser’s organizer, said three different local chefs would be featured on three different dates preparing “mouthwatering cuisines.”

Featured will be a chef from Hickok’s on June 2, Chartwell’s Catering on June 12, and Gella’s Diner on June 16.

Participants will be sent a link on the designated day so they may follow along, cooking the meal at home, or just enjoy watching, Shoaf said. “The chefs will show off their culinary skills and teach us techniques we can utilize to amaze our family and friends,” she added.

Each 60-minute session will feature the designated chef cooking a main dish, side dish and/or dessert. Registration is $15 per session or $40 for all three sessions.  For more information or to register, please call Shoaf at (785) 623-2800 or (785) 259-3811.  Payment may be made online at or by mailing a check to First Call at the above address.

Surplus commodities to be distributed May 28

Free government surplus commodities will be distributed to qualified individuals from 7:30 to 9 a.m. Friday, May 28, at Unite Common Grounds Coffee House and Free Store (inside The Gamers Guild), 200 E. Eighth St.

Commodities will be distributed on a first-come, first-served basis as long as supplies last, said Brandon Nimz, Unite Ministry leader. Recipients must meet income guidelines.

Commodities included in this distribution are anticipated to be split peas, apples, sliced pears, potato flakes, lentils, spaghetti sauce, orange juice, mixed fruit, pistachios, shrimp, almonds, and fish.

More information about income requirements and future commodity distribution times is available at

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

St. Michael’s plans ‘Pentecost Birthday Party’

St. Michael’s Episcopal Church, 2900 Canal Blvd., will have a “Pentecost Birthday Party,” complete with birthday cake, from 11:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. Sunday, May 23.

“Pentecost celebrates the sending out of the disciples to do their ministry in the world–-to be the church,” said the Rev. Shay Craig, vicar. “This year, we celebrate the return of Christ’s faithful people to the rhythm of the church, to regular worship together, to this sacred space and to our work of service and love-–being the church.”

Hays Christian losing pastor; reception to honor him

Hays Christian Church, 22nd and Marshall, will have a come-and-go reception from 2 to 4 p.m. Sunday, May 23, to honor the service of its longtime pastor, the Rev. Kevin Daniels.

Daniels is leaving the church to accept a teaching position in Lawrence. He has been the pastor of the church since January 2009.   He and his wife, Lori, have two children and will be leaving Hays at the end of May.

New Baptist church will begin services May 23

A new Baptist church will be starting in Hays on Sunday, May 23.  Old Paths Baptist Church will have its first service at 10:30 a.m. at Hilton Garden Inn & Convention Center, 221 W. 43rd St. It will hold evening services on Sundays at 6.

The church, which describes itself as independent and fundamental, is pastored by the Rev. Plato Shepherd.  The assistant pastor is the Rev. Joshua Middlebrooks.

Providing special music at the first service will be The Epley’s, gospel singers from Pleasant, Iowa.

More information is available from Shepherd at (785) 826-6397 or online at

Options invites public to participate in ‘Care or Share’

Options: Domestic & Sexual Violence Services is encouraging members of the public to participate in its “Care or Share” event by helping sow seeds of hope in its Survivor’s Garden.

Individuals can visit and fill out a card. On one side of the card is the picture of an iris. On the other side of the card, individuals may write about their own experience of domestic or sexual violence, offer a prayer, or share a message of encouragement for the organization’s clients.

The public is invited to join in a short ceremony and walk among the paper irises at 4 p.m. Wednesday, May 25, at 215 W. 13th. The ceremony will also be streamed on the organization’s Facebook page @OptionsHays.

Options is a non-profit organization that aids victims and survivors of domestic and sexual violence, stalking, and human trafficking, according to its website. It provides free, confidential services to women, children, and men in Northwest Kansas. Its 24-hour hotline is (800) 794-4624.

Methodist Church doing food drive for Hays High pantry

Hays United Methodist Church, 305 W. Seventh, is collecting food for the Hays High Food Pantry for the summer.  Sponsored by the church’s Mission Committee, the food drive is designed “to help keep students fed during the summer,” according to the church’s electronic newsletter.

Donors may bring items from the following list to the church or may make cash contributions.

Items needed are ramen noodles, canned vegetables, peanut butter, pasta, canned fruit, jelly, pasta sauce, pasta sides, pancake mix, macaroni and cheese dinners, rice sides, syrup, Chicken or Tuna Helper, instant potatoes, cereal, canned ravioli, soup, pudding, canned tuna or chicken, tomato sauce, and canned beans.

Information on church hours is available by calling (785) 625-3408.

North Oak’s Vacation Bible School is June 7-11

North Oak Community Church, 3000 Oak, will be offering in-person Vacation Bible School from 9 a.m. to noon Monday, June 7, through Friday, June 11.

The free school, which will feature a “Mystery Island” theme, is for children completing kindergarten through fifth grade.  Registration is available at