—Drive-By Greeting Hosted at Simi Valley Church—
At Simi Valley church in Southern California, Pastors Jan and Phil White started a “drive-by” greeting time after the virtual worship service on Sabbaths. Two weeks ago 20 people showed up in their cars and the pastors prayed with them; collected tithe and offerings; handed out Sabbath School materials for adults and children, and gave out Pastor Phil’s famous “Smile, Jesus Loves You” balloons to the kids. A blessing for all involved! Learn more about the Simi Valley SDA Church via the link below.
SimiAdventist

—Churches Team Up to Host Grocery Drive-Thru—
In Central California, local churches in the South Bay are teaming up to help the community by giving free groceries to families who need it the most while limiting exposure amid COVID-19 restrictions. The Adventist Church in Sunnyvale and other Adventist churches partnered with “Fight the Hate” to host drive-thru free grocery pick-ups.
Read more: https://www.kron4.com/features/kron4-heroes/south-bay-churches-offering-free-drive-thru-grocery-pick-up-service-for-local-community/

—U Matter Grocery Give-a-way Hosted in Fresno—
In Fresno, on Sunday, May 3, several Adventist churches partnered to give away groceries to a thousand families. The giveaway started at 9 a.m., but so many people showed up that they ran out of boxes by noon, two hours early.
About a hundred volunteers packed up 40-thousand pounds of food, wearing gloves and masks as they loaded up cars. Church officials are hoping to do more giveaways at the end of May or early June. We’re so impressed by the hundreds of hours; thousands of pounds of food; and the dedicated volunteers Union-wide who are continuing to feed those in need, during these times. Keep up the great work!
Read more: https://www.yourcentralvalley.com/news/thousands-of-families-received-groceries-from-adventist-church/

—Local Church Helps El Dorado Adventist School Graduates Celebrate—
Like many high schools across the country, El Dorado Adventist School in Placerville, was grappling with how to properly recognize their graduating high school seniors given the pandemic. That’s when a local church came up with a special, heart-warming idea. They decided to take the graduation ceremony on the road. Kelly Gaines is one Academy senior who received a special surprise – right in her own driveway! And she believes this will be more memorable for her than an actual graduation!
Watch on Good Day Sacramento: https://gooddaysacramento.cbslocal.com/video/4537181-driveway-graduation/

—Teacher Appreciation At EAS—
Also at El Dorado Adventist School – last week was Teacher Appreciation Week, and the families did something very special. They took part in a drive-by parade of appreciation for their teachers. The school staff gathered in front of the school (standing the proper distance apart) and watched students and parents drive by holding signs of appreciation. The local police, sheriff, and fire departments also participated in the parade. In addition, teachers received gifts delivered to their homes. Way to go, Placerville, and for all the incredible “drive-by” graduation memories and Teacher Appreciation shown from schools all over our Union – a huge “Thank You!”
Learn more about EAS: https://www.eldoradoadventistschool.com/

—Mental Health Awareness Month—
Mental Health Awareness Month has been observed in May in the United States since 1949, reaching millions of people in the U.S. through the media, local events, and screenings. In the current circumstances, our own mental health—and that of our families and loved ones—is a very relevant concern. Below are resources from Adventist Health, the CDC, and the National Alliance on Mental Illness. With all the exciting and upbeat stories we share with you every week, we recognize that these are extremely stressful, discouraging times for many of us.
We want to be ever mindful of what our church members, family and friends are going through, and offer encouragement and practical suggestions on how to cope. Please check out these links; talk to your pastor, or a counselor, or a trusted friend. Get help if you’re feeling isolated and lonely. There’s help out there for you—just a phone call or a click away.

Adventist Health: https://www.adventisthealth.org/blog/2020/may/taking-care-of-your-mental-health-during-a-pande/

CDC: https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/daily-life-coping/managing-stress-anxiety.html

National Alliance on Mental Illness: https://www.nami.org/Get-Involved/Awareness-Events/Mental-Health-Month

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“Therefore, whenever we have the opportunity, we should do good to everyone–especially to those in the family of faith.” –Galatians 6:10, NLT