Communion Offering, Sunday, August 4 Lydia Patterson Institute

A great deal of attention is being paid to the southern border, especially at Juarez and El Paso. It is a difficult and complex issue that makes many people feel helpless. Yet, there is some satisfaction that comes from knowing the United Methodist Church has had a presence of healing and empowerment there for over 100 years. In 1913, a Methodist laywoman, with the help of her Women’s Missionary Society of her church, started a school for Hispanic boys living in el barrio who had no access to schools. Since then, the Lydia Patterson Institute, or La Lydia, as it’s affectionately known, has been a beacon of academic opportunity for underserved students.

Located just a few blocks from the border bridge between El Paso and Juarez, many of the students make a long journey from deep within Juarez and walk across the bridge every morning. La Lydia provides a “cross cultural, academic, and state-of-the-art education.” Ninety-five percent of graduates go on to college, many of them studying at some of the best United Methodist Colleges around the country including Philander Smith and Hendrix.

La Lydia continues to be a banner ministry of the United Methodist Church supported by the South Central Jurisdiction. Yet, the buildings at LPI need a great deal of work. Therefore, they are engaged in a multi-million dollar capital campaign for improvements. The Arkansas Conference has committed to helping build a new chapel and the United Methodist Foundation of Arkansas is providing a matching grant for every dollar raised by Arkansas churches.

You have the opportunity to contribute to this campaign on Sunday, August 4th. Our communion offering that day will go towards the Arkansas commitment to La Lydia and will be matched by the UMFA. Many of you have been great supporters of the Lydia Patterson Institute for many years; and if you would like to make a significant gift to these improvements, please contact our Senior Pastor, David Freeman ( or 501-372-2256). Your gifts will make a significant impact on the difficult and complex life at our southern border.

Lesley Andrews

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