first church missions



These include ministries like serving at the Cold Weather Overflow Shelter at the YWCA sheltering women and children, Shalom Partnership and its care and education for children, AARP Tax Ministry relieving people of anxieties around filing taxes, Discovery Corner Preschool which provides a safe, nurturing and learning environment for children, Lancaster Reentry Management Organization which helps people returning from prison to become productive members of society, Dorcas Kamanda and her work in Sierra Leone among orphans, Bluefields, Nicaragua and supoort of Betesda School, Sudan Rebirth Ministry and support for Tanzania. 


First Church seeks to connect people to Jesus Christ, grow disciples, and relieve suffering in the Lancaster community and throughout the world. These mission partnerships and connections help First Church to fulfill that mission.


Anchorage Breakfast Program

The Anchorage Breakfast Program is hosted by First Church.  The breakfast program runs 5 days a week, 52 weeks a year.  Free Breakfast is served to an average of 150 per day.  The low income, unsheltered and socially excluded population, as well as any and all who are hungry come to eat.  Breakfast is served from 8:30-9:45 am each day with a regular menu of juice, milk, cereal, eggs, toast, a hot beverage and fruit.  Each day a team of 12-16 volunteers come together to prepare breakfast.


37,975 meals were served in the year 2017!


The annual budget of the breakfast program is $163,000.  The program employees a director, guest services, a cleaning company and is run by a board of directors.  


A continual Anchorage Fundraiser is the sale of 12 oz. coffee bags roasted by RedRoseCoffeeRoasters.com.  100% of the profits from the purchase of coffee goes to support the Anchorage Breakfast.  The coffee is always available in the gathering place.


For more information, check out the website.  

aarp tax ministry

AARP TAX AIDE – Free Tax Help

Starting February 1, 2019, at First United Methodist Church

Monday through Friday, 9:00 PM to 1:30 PM – No Appointments



MISSION

This is an FUMC signature mission that has been in continuous operation since tax year 2007.   Our volunteers prepare tax returns for local people in Lancaster City and the surrounding area at no charge.   This tax service is equipped to file electronically for Federal and State returns, and at the same time, prepare paper returns for the Lancaster County Tax Collection Bureau (LCTCB).  We also provide either property tax rebate or rent rebate preparation for low income taxpayers who qualify.  The wireless internet infrastructure at FUMC is critical to the success of this mission.


SCOPE

We serve low to middle income (undefined) taxpayers with special emphasis on retirees and the elderly.  The scope of the returns we can prepare is defined by the IRS and is quite detailed.  We rarely have persons who are out of scope and denied service. Every tax return is mandated to have a quality review by a Team Leader before being electronically filed.  The average gross income (AGI) of our clients at FUMC was $19,770 which was slightly less than 2016   We secured more than $1,667,000 in refunds for 1443 clients who filed federal returns at the FUMC tax office.

Our FUMC site is an affiliate of the AARP Foundation and is the largest affiliated site in Eastern Pennsylvania in terms of the number of efiled returns.  Our process is 100 percent computer and network based, and runs in a Windows 10 environment running the Taxslayer application and Internet Explorer.  We electronically file 99 percent of our tax returns to the IRS.

Tax Ministry Annual Report 2016

Tax Ministry Annual Report 2015

Tax Ministry Annual Report 2014


VOLUNTEERS

Our plan is to open for business at 9:00 am on February 1st 2019 with 10 computers and a staff of 15.  Normal hours are 9 am to 2 pm, Monday to Friday.  

 

Interested in becoming certified to join this ministry?  

If so, call a member of our leadership team:  Steve Franz (717-656-0353), or Ralph Beedle (717-464-6945)