Social Ministry Team

Our Social Ministry Team's mission is to make a difference for our neighbors by responding to their needs as Christians. We invite any new or current members and friends to join our activities and suggest new ones. Our team supports local outreach, such as Dover Friendly Kitchen, End 68 Hours of Hunger, Operation Blessing, and many more.

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Operation Blessing: February 2018

Posted by Mark Donahue on Thursday, February 8, 2018 @ 3:04 PM

Operation Blessing fights poverty and addiction by embracing people and families in crisis with compassion, offering hope and healing for changed lives.  It provides food, clothing and household necessities to those in need/crises.  It promotes healthy life choices through targeted community  education and outreach programs.  And, they offer the hope for the changed life that comes through faith in Christ.  

Many changes have taken place since April 2017 when Tammy Joslin became Executive Director.

The building had a major facelift  and the parking lot was repainted and repainted.

A program funded by The United Way, Using Bridges Out of Poverty approach, was offered to under resourced people 18 and older.  The program was offered to the Portsmouth Community through Operation Blessing and The Portsmouth Housing Authority.  This program used individuals in poverty to build their resources for a more prosperous life for themselves and their families and their communities.   There was an experienced facilitator who led the program.  19 individuals graduated from this 16 week program.  (It can be offered again.)

Starting this past January, a program Called New Life Recovery began to help combat Portsmouth’s opioid crisis.  It is a daily program which began with a limited number of participants, and emphasizes Christ in their lives. 

There are also bi-annual yard  sales.  In 2018 the dates are May 25 and 26 and October 25 and 26.  Items can be donated year round.  

Household items and food can be dropped off during days OB is open Wed, Thurs and Fri from 10-4.  (Presently  there is a moratorium on clothing donations.)

Holy Trinity has long supported Operation Blessing.  We have donated food on a weekly basis.  Other items have been taken by our Church members to OB.

We usually ask for certain items each month - although any food item or paper good, cleaning item is accepted and needed.

THIS MONTH I WOULD LIKE TO ASK THAT YOU THINK ABOUT OB WHEN YOU SHOP AND PICK UP SOME CANNED SOUP,VEGETABLE , OR FRUIT!  The items can be placed in the green tubs under the mailboxes.  Thank you.

End 68 Hours of Hunger - February - June 2018 dates

Posted by Mark Donahue on Thursday, January 25, 2018 @ 2:42 PM

Holy Trinity Lutheran Church has a team that packs food for the program 'End 68 Hours of Hunger' for the city of Portsmouth!! This program is designed to provide food for children in need that would sustain them for the weekend when school is not in session.This year Kathy McKenna and Lauren Gianino are the Team Coordinators for our church.

Our team is responsible for packing food bags for children on 7 Thursdays throughout the school year. We pack at the First United Methodist Church, 129 Miller Ave. Portsmouth and we meet at 6pm.   Depending on the number of volunteers, the packing process takes between 40 minutes to an hour - but rarely a full hour. 

The remaining dates our team is responsible for are:

Thursday, February 8th

Thursday, March 22nd

Thursday, May 3rd

Thursday, June 7th

We know that everyone can not make every date but we send you a reminder  a week ahead of each date and you just respond to let us know if you are available or not. Occasionally, we will have to change our packing date if there is a storm predicted. If you are interested in joining our team please email Kathy McKenna, Lauren Ginanino or the Church Office as soon as possible. If you know of someone who would like to join our team....please have them contact us!! We always welcome new participants!!

Let us know if you have any questions!!

Kathy McKenna & Lauren Gianino

God's Work Our Hands was a Success!

Posted by Mark Donahue on Thursday, September 21, 2017 @ 2:47 PM

Thanks to all for making this a great day!  We had many participants packing kits between services.  We put together 35 Hygiene kits and 37 School Supply kits that will be sent to Orphanage Resources International.  This organization supports approximately 50 orphanages, of different sizes, around the Guatemala City area.  We had some supplies left over and those were donated as well.  All the extra school supplies will be sent to TX for those schools impacted by Hurricane Harvey.  The extra hygiene supplies will go to Operation Blessing.  So, thank you again for all the generous donations!  We could not have made this day a success without your support!  Your donations were shared locally, within the US and internationally!  God is good! 

On Sunday afternoon, about 20 Holy Trinity members gathered at the Mark Wentworth Home in Portsmouth to share a moment of song with residents and their visitors.  The room was filled with singers, residents, and residents’ family members who were attending the celebration for national grandparents’ day – an unexpected bonus for us.   Dave Mercer led us in singing song after song – hymns, secular songs, patriotic music, and old favorites – for almost an hour.  Residents and guests sang along as they were able, or mouthed the words that they recalled songs from past moments in their lives.  Music is indeed a powerful force for connecting with others, for supporting a positive sense of mental and physical well-being, and for uniting us as a community.  We left with a shared feeling of wanting to do this more than once a year – maybe together we can make it happen. 

Donna Huot & Judy Evans

Operation Blessing: August 2017

Posted by Mark Donahue on Wednesday, August 9, 2017 @ 11:11 AM

OB is taking time to reorganize  with its new director, Tammy Joselin.  Starting this fall they are going to become a drug rehabilitation center.  The participants will know that this will be a faith based program.  They will also be participating in the workings of OB  as part of the rehab program.

At this time, they are not accepting any donations until they have become reorganized.  They will also not be picking up and delivering furniture.  Another change is that they will  only be accepting new or in good condition household goods and clothing.  

In the next Tidings I will be able to tell you more as I have not been volunteering this summer.  Please keep OB in your prayers that they may be able to help turn users lives around, and that the old mission of OB will continue to help those in need.

Lois Laurence

Our mission of giving in Guatemala!

Posted by Mark Donahue on Thursday, July 20, 2017 @ 1:18 PM

Seven Members of Holy Trinity are preparing to travel on a mission trip to Fundaniños Orphanage in San Jose Piñula, Guatemala on Sunday, August 6 - 13.  The seven members include; Kay Drought with her two sons, Daniel and Jonah, Tory and Alex Liebel, Juanita Sihotang, and Cristina Dolcino.  Our service work project is still needed to be identified at the writing of this message, but we know we’ll be playing with the 50 children who live, learn, pray, and grow at Fundaniños!  We will be staying in the volunteer house, eating meals with the children, leading special activities with the children, and helping with their Christian Education lesson on Sunday afternoon.  

In addition to our big project work at Fundaniños, we will also be organizing two outreach projects.  One involves the visiting of Casa del Destino, an orphanage of 11 children who are 4-11 years old.  We will bring with us playground balls, bubbles, chalk, jump ropes, etc. so we can play and leave donations for these children who could benefit from visitors and new toys.  Our other special project will involve purchasing and "bagging up" rice, dried beans, and sugar with the older children at Fundaniños.  We will then take these bags and walk to the neighbors just outside the orphanage to offer these staples to the 12-15 families who work and live in primitive conditions.  

Later in the week we will also take a half day trip to the town of Antigua where “old” Spanish-Baroque influenced architecture can be seen.  We will walk around this small town and visit churches like, the Church of San Francisco and Cathedral de Santiago, practice Spanish while ordering lunch and buying gifts, and see the comings and goings of the Guatemalan people who live there.    

There will be plenty of time to play with the children outdoors and inside the dining hall space.  Of course, soccer is an ongoing game that is played daily along with swinging, throwing ball games, jump rope, and hopscotch.  Many children love to do crafts, board games, color, face painting, and polishing nails.  For quieter times, there are books written in Spanish and English that can be read to the children.   And just when you are ready to relax there is always help needed to help get the younger children ready for bed! 

Our week in Guatemala is bound to be busy, surprising, tiring, sad, fun, and emotional- just to mention of few adjectives!  As in all endeavors of God’s work, individuals give much of yourself - time, energy, and love.  But what also happens is the realization that you RECEIVE so much more in “gifts.”  Simple gifts like the precious smiles of joy, little hands reaching up asking for help, "high fives" in being able to teach something, wiping away tears after a misunderstanding, or hearing committed voices while saying grace before eating together.  Our nightly share of “bummers and blessings” will be the avenue we use to discuss our observations, learn about another culture/country, reflect upon bible verses, and reflect upon the numerous experiences that happen when away from home. 

Your prayers and support will be felt and very much appreciated while we are in Guatemala using our hands to share God’s love.  Thank you also for the budgeted $500 dollars approved by the Church Council as well as the monetary donations given for school supplies, big service work materials, and outreach projects.  We will be posting daily messages about our week, the method of which has yet to be determined. 

We return late on Sunday, August 13th. In early fall we will share our mission trip experiences with all of you!

This is the link to the Fundaniños site.

This link shows pictures the children we will be serving!

This is a 4 minute video (in English) about Fundaniños.


Operation Blessing: May 2017

Posted by Mark Donahue on Thursday, May 11, 2017 @ 2:00 PM

The article below was written by Tammy Joslyn who is the new director of Operation Blessing.  God did answer our prayers and Tammy who was already an employee of OB answered the call to,be the new OB Executive Director.  Tammy is a wonderful lady who is energetic, dedicated and a great leader.  Please note the need for volunteers.  Please consider helping them fulfill their mission.  IF you have any questions, suggestions, etc., please contact Lois Laurence.                                 

Matthew 25:35-36 “For I was hungry and you gave me something to eat, I was thirsty and you gave me something to drink, I was a stranger and you invited me in, I needed clothes and you clothed me, I was sick and you looked after me, I was in prison and you came to visit me.”

     I want to share my story with you. I was a young mom and military wife, and my husband was deployed 7 months out of the year I was home with 3 young children. We found ourselves in a very tight spot, just trying to make ends meet. There would be days that I would feed the kids first and then eat if there was enough left, some days there was and some days there was none. Operation Blessing came into my life and helped me turn things around, they provided food and clothing for my children as well as some household items and furniture for our home. Now 30 years later, God provided an opportunity for me to serve here at Operation Blessing.

     I would like to introduce myself, my name is Tammy Joslyn, the new Executive Director of Operation Blessing, Inc. I recently accepted this position and am very excited about what God is doing in and through Operation Blessing. I shared my story with you to show that God has been using Operation Blessing for more than 30 years in the Seacoast area and we believe that He will continue to bless this ministry as we honor Him in all that we do

     Operation Blessing was started almost 40 years ago by a couple with the desire to help bring relief to families and individuals that found themselves going through a rough time, financially, emotionally and spiritually.

     Our vision and mission is to provide temporary assistance and life enrichment opportunities to our clients.

We cannot do this without your support. You can help support Operation Blessing by volunteering, donating clothing/household items or monetary donation.

Volunteer Opportunities: Wednesday, Thursday & Friday 10am-4pm
     1. Food Pantry: We are looking for a capable leader to oversee the food pantry on the days that we are open. This would include overseeing the volunteers that work in this area. Keeping the food pantry organized and clean as well as rotating foods, checking dates and quality of food.

     2. Electronic Workshop: If you enjoy working with your hands and know how to do minor electronic repairs. Then we have a volunteer opportunity for you. All of the electronics that we receive are tested, updated, and cleaned before being given out to clients.  

     3. Furniture: Looking for strong men and women who can pick up and deliver furniture to/from our clients. Upon receiving furniture they will do an inspection and cleaning of the furniture as well as any small repairs.

     4. Miscellaneous Sorting (Yard Sale): We receive a number of miscellaneous items that don’t have a place. We call this area “yard-sale”. We are looking for someone to oversee and organize this area as well as organize 2 yard sales per year.

     5. Fundraising, Marketing and Development.  

     Moving forward as the director I find it very important to not only connect with the churches in our area but also find out how we can serve you and your congregation. We want to be a blessing to you also! So please tell us how we can serve you.

God Bless,

Tammy Joslyn

Executive Director

Operation Blessing, Inc.

Trip to Guatemala

Posted by Mark Donahue on Thursday, April 27, 2017 @ 2:49 PM

There are currently four youth and two adults confirmed to fly to Guatemala on Sunday, August 6th for a week of service at Fundaninos Orphanage!  Time and room is still available so please consider joining us for this amazing opportunity.  A range of quiet and more active activities are available in this secure childrens' home. The Council has also agreed to provide a $300 stipend to seven first time attendees which is wonderful.  If you have questions or are even just a little curious please contact Cristina at

Operation Blessing: April 2017

Posted by Mark Donahue on Thursday, April 6, 2017 @ 2:27 PM

As of this past week Operation Blessing is again without an Executive Director, who just resigned.  I ask that you all pray that the Board of Directors be guided by Our Lord to find a a new leader for this most important mission.  I also ask for prayer for the staff  and the many volunteers to be able to continue caring for the needy during this transition period.  

Meanwhile the mission continues to serve so many people each week giving out free clothing, bedding, food and personal and household items.  As I worked in the housewares section this past week I noted the need for kitchen utensils.   We need can openers, spatulas, large cooking spoons, etc,  etc.  There is always a need for pots and pans and baking pans.  Why not check your utensil drawer and find an extra that you really don't need.  

Food is also always in demand.  Let us try and see how we can fill the green buckets under the mailboxes during this next month.  I have noted that recently they have not been very full.  Let's  collect canned fruit and rice and beans and toilet paper and dish detergent.  Alternately, when you shop, do as I do and purchase some items that are on sale that week.  That's all for this month and thank you for your prayers and for your support of OB.  

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