Youth for Christ Club Serves Christmas Cheer!

On Saturday, December 9th some students from the Youth for Christ Club at Barbara Ingram School for the Arts provided a dinner and service for our evening guests!

The students brought chicken, provided by Brownsville Church of the Brethren and Bonnie’s at the Red Byrd. In addition to the chicken, the students had mac & cheese and delicious desserts for all of our community guests. The incredible folks at Brownsville Church of the Brethren also made goodie bags for the students to hand out to all the evening guests.

During the evening service the students led music for our guests and Bethany Norris gave a message. Following the service the students served the food they prepared and spent the evening interacting with the dinner guests.

The student volunteers had such a good time serving that several of them even commented that they couldn’t think of a better way to spend their Saturday evening. They’re hoping, and we are too, that they will be able to return in February to serve again.

If you remember, the Youth for Christ Club at BISFA hosted a benefit concert for The Hope Center back in the fall. They raised financial support for our ministry and then they followed that up with an evening of service to others. What an incredible group of young people who are showing God’s love in so many ways and using their talents and gifts to help better our community! We are just so thankful for these young people and all they’re doing to make a positive difference in our community!

Thank you Youth for Christ Club at BISFA, Brownsville Church of the Brethren, and everyone else who helped to make this a great evening for our guests!

To learn more about Brownsville Church of the Brethren visit


Congrats Graduates!

Earlier this summer we were able to celebrate with our residents as three of them graduated from our Foundations Life Recovery program.

Our Foundations Life Recovery program is a free 13-month addiction and life rehabilitation program that helps men conquer the sins that destroy their bodies, relationships and lives. During the 13-months in the program, the men attend classes, Bible studies, and participate in work programs. These classes and programs help to educate the men about their true identity and purpose that God has for them in this life.

Some of the men who join the program have been raised in the church or Christian homes while others are brand new to the life-changing message of Christ. All of the men are dealing with addictions of some sort whether they are alcohol, drugs and pornography. The majority of the guys who come seeking help are trying desperately to stop the destruction of themselves, having already lost jobs, houses, and most importantly, relationships with family & friends.

While in our program, the guys live in our dorm and are fed, clothed and counseled for free, thanks to the generous support of our neighbors, friends, churches and other organizations in the community who fund The Hope Center. Many of the men have nothing left when they walk in the door. But they leave having gained so much for so little!

We are so thankful for the staff, volunteers and churches who help to bring the message of God’s love into the hearts of these men who Satan has enjoyed destroying. For the staff at The Hope Center, to be able to watch our residents graduate is a deeply emotional and incredibly exciting moment. Knowing how dark their lives once were and to see them glowing with the happiness of Christ, it’s a feeling that words can barely describe. Each one of these men was once a forgotten soul that Satan had thought he devoured. But God saw them for their potential in all of their sin and He had something great planned for them.

The men in our Foundations Life Recovery program have a lot of obstacles to conquer. From breaking the addictions, to learning who they can trust, to rebuilding their self value, to dealing with personal demons, there are many roadblocks in the path to recovery but these men who graduated fought the good fight and gave the other guys in the program the courage to continue their own fight to sobriety and salvation.




So join us in congratulating the three men who got the victory this summer. Frank Shortt, Troy Robinson and Bill Rice all completed the Foundations Life Recovery program and were honored at a moving ceremony for them. Staff, family, friends and volunteers were invited to join in the celebratory ceremony where guest speaker, Matt Sargent, spoke. Following the ceremony, graduates, residents, staff and guests all gathered together for a time of fellowship in our dining room.

Jeff Duncan & SisterDSC_0079

We’ve asked each of the three men to give us a brief testimony of their journey towards recovery. Here is what they said:

Frank Shortt

Frank Shortt 2015I came to The Hope Center in September of 2013 out of desperation and loss of hope. Since coming here, God has done something in my life that I, and my loved ones, would never had thought possible.

God has, and is, changing this heart that was hardened and broken. Among many other things, He has given hope where there was no hope.

For now, my future plans consist of building my relationship with God, His Son Jesus, and the Holy Spirit, along with my two biological sons.

Troy Robinson

Troy RobinsonWhen I came to The Hope Center in January of 2013 I was lost, scrambling to gain meaningful sobriety. Not just drinking and drugging, which I had succumbed to, but being able to live purposefully.

While in the program, God taught me that Jesus is the only way. He is the truth. He is the life. The hopeless can find hope in the Almighty. There is victory in Jesus.

My future plans are to finish well, rejoicing in the Lord always. “Let us lay aside every weight and the sin that so easily ensnares us, and let us run with endurance the race that is set before us.” (Hebrews 12:1)

Bill Rice

William Rice 2015I am 55 years old and I have struggled with alcoholism both as an unbeliever and a believer. Before coming to The Hope Center I attended Bible College but I succumbed to my addiction and fell away from the Lord. So in 2007 I enrolled in the Foundations Life Recovery program and progressed well until I blew it and was released from the program. I attribute my failure to spiritual pride because I had a knowledge of the Word that other members of the program did not.

In 2014 I knew I had to get help and asked to return to the program at The Hope Center. I finished the program and remained sober the whole time. God has dealt a lot with me in the spiritual pride area but He is still working on me.

It is my desire someday to be in ministry, but I find as a graduate that I struggle with handling freedom. I would appreciate your prayers that I would give God total control of every area of my life.


Please continue to pray for these men as they venture out on their own, back into the world where Satan has plenty of temptations waiting for them. Pray that they continue to fight the fight and stay strong in the Lord.

And thank you, to each of you who has invested in the lives of these men and everyone else who has come to The Hope Center seeking help in some form. From prayers, to volunteering, to hosting a chapel service, to donating food, shopping in our Thrift Stores and financially supporting us so we can continue to provide this ministry for free, God has used you to help change a life. You may not realize it or even think about it but these three men, and the countless other individuals and families helped at The Hope Center, are because of faithful friends like you who God has called to help change this city and win it for Christ.

Thank you for partnering with us as we celebrate 60 years and thousands upon thousands of lives changed in Hagerstown!

Annual Germantown Cookout

We enjoy building relationships with the many churches that support this ministry in one way or another. Many churches are involved by helping to host an evening chapel service followed by a meal. Other churches help by donating food or clothing. And other churches are involved with providing certain items for specific ministries when we are in need.

So to say that our local churches are important to this ministry would be an understatement. We appreciate all the churches that partner with us to reach thousands of people each year for Christ.

But it’s very special, especially for our residents, when we are invited to a church for a meal!

Germantown Church of God hosted our residents and staff for a cookout Sunday evening, June 10th. But this isn’t the first time the kind folks from Germantown have done this. For the past 15 years the church has been grilling up a wonderful cookout for our residents and staff!

And the event was even more special for our residents and staff because our receptionist, Sue, is not only a valuable staff person at The Hope Center but also an active member of the church – and the pastor’s wife!

The delicious menu included hamburgers and hot dogs on the grill along with salads, desserts, macaroni & cheese, and other picnic favorites. Everything was cooked, grilled and prepared by the great cooks and hospitality team who attend the church!

Germantown Church of God is located up the mountain on a beautiful property which seems like a far distance from the downtown core where The Hope Center is located. So it’s especially nice for our residents to be able to have time to relax and explore the beautiful property surrounding the church.

After the cookout and outdoor time, everyone gathered in the sanctuary of the church for an evening of praise and worship, testimonies and a message.

Germantown Church of God has been involved in one way or another with The Hope Center since approximately 1960.  Their involvement includes hosting a monthly chapel service, and every Thanksgiving they provide 30-40 pies for our annual community feast.

We want to thank Pastor Mark Hosler, Sue and all the wonderful people of Germantown Church of God for being so generous and hospitable to our residents and staff and for being so faithful to serving the Lord throughout the years at The Hope Center!

If you are currently looking for a church, please remember to check out Germantown Church of God. The church is located at 16924 Raven Rock Road, Cascade, MD  21719. For more info about the church or to learn about how your church can get involved, please call 301.739.1165 or email us at


Antrim BIC Youth Serve the Community

On Wednesday evening, March 28th, the youth group at Antrim Brethren in Christ Church hosted the chapel service for our residents and community. Former staff member of The Hope Center, Matt Sargent, is now serving as Family and Youth Pastor at Antrim.

The youth group praise band lead the worship songs and then  Matt Sargent brought the message. Hosting the evening chapel service was a first time experience for Antrim’s youth group, but the teens were enthusiastic and seemed to enjoy the opportunity to serve.

Following the service, the residents and community were served a delicious spaghetti dinner. The students helped to serve and interact with our dinner guests.

Antrim Brethren in Christ Church is located at 24 Kauffman Road East. It’s located just north of Greencastle, PA across from Mrs Gibble’s restaurant on Route 11.

It’s great to see our youth get involved in the community. We look forward to having Antrim’s youth group work with us for an entire week this summer! If your youth group, school group or club would like to get involved with The Hope Center in one way or another, please call us at 301.739.1165 or email us at

If you’re looking for a church for yourself or your family or a youth program for your children or grandchildren and would like to know more about Antrim Brethren in Christ Church, please visit their website at or call them at 717.375.4658.


Let the Christmas Celebration Begin!

Each evening our residents and guests from the community are treated to a chapel service hosted by various churches in the area. The churches are given one night a month. In many cases, the churches rotate different groups from their church to serve. From youth groups to choirs to Sunday School classes, each night’s service is different from the night before.

In addition to ministering in the chapel service, most churches also bring along enough volunteers to help cook & serve the evening meal. This meal is free for anyone in the community as well as our residents and transients.

Now that it’s December, many churches use this opportunity to do something special for our guests. And last night was one of those special nights.

The choir from Evangel Baptist Church (17922 Broadfording Rd, Hagerstown) performed their Christmas Cantata last evening. Since it was December 1st, it was a great way to kick-off the month of December and begin the celebrations for Christmas!

And not to be outdone by the Christmas choir, the ladies in the kitchen made sure that they brought along their Christmas spirit too! In addition to a delicious dinner, the volunteers of Evangel Baptist made plenty of cookies and fudge for dessert.

We’re sure our residents & guests had a great time last night. Thanks Evangel Baptist for bringing your choir and kicking off our Christmas season!

And we want to thank all the various churches and groups that faithfully serve at the Hope Center each month! We appreciate your service and we are so incredibly thankful to have friends and neighbors that care about the community as much as you do! We know that we couldn’t do it without you!

If you are interested in getting your church, Sunday School class or youth group involved, please email us at or call us at 301.739.1165. If you are only interested in preparing or serving food, please contact us and we’ll figure out how to plug you into the program!