St. James Brethren Youth Serve & Learn

This past Sunday evening, a few students and leaders from the youth group at St. James Brethren Church stopped by to serve a light dinner to the residents at The Hope Center.

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The youth group at St. James Brethren Church is no stranger to The Hope Center. They’ve helped fill food boxes for our food bank ministry multiple times and have even taken a tour of the facility and briefly met some of our residents.

But this time was special for the group. And it was special for our residents as well. The youth group prepared the meal and served it but then also spent some time interacting and talking with our residents.

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At one point in the evening, some of the men gave their testimonies for the students and leaders. But then the leaders at St. James were able to give their testimonies for the men to hear.

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It was a wonderful evening of food & fellowship for our residents and the youth group from St. James.

Sara Moore, the youth leader at SJBC, was so thankful for the opportunity for her students, and the leaders, to serve in another capacity at The Hope Center. The chance to actually serve the men and then talk to them was something special for the students.

The kids enjoyed the evening so much that they want to come back and do it again! And it’s important for the students to see and hear how God is changing lives at The Hope Center. It gives these young Christians proof, outside of their own world, that God has the power to not just conquer sin, but also renew a life – and that every person, no matter how lost or destroyed by sin, has value and is important to God.

Teaching young people the importance of service is vital. It gives them the opportunity to understand that they are called by God to be the hands of Christ to people in need and it gives young people the chance to see that there are people in their own city who may not have had the wonderful life that they’ve been blessed with. It helps to create a compassionate heart in each student that they will, hopefully, be carried with them to adulthood.

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But teaching Christian service isn’t the only lesson that can be learned. These students from SJBC learned how human the residents at The Hope Center are. They learned that these are not just “homeless” or “addicted” men. These are people. These are the people that Christ died for, just like He died for them. They learned that with God, there is always hope. And that is a valuable lesson for anyone to learn.

We are so thankful that Sara has a heart for her students and for The Hope Center. She is teaching her students that being a part of a church means being THE church and showing God’s love to the least, the last and the lost.

We will always welcome the youth group from St. James Brethren Church to The Hope Center anytime! Thank you students & leaders from SJBC!

And we would welcome any youth group to stop by and volunteer. If you have a youth group, civic group, boy scout or girl scout troop that would love to help at The Hope Center then please call us at 301.739.1165 or email us at For more info about The Hope Center at Hagerstown Rescue Mission please check out our website at

If you are looking for a local church to be a part of or you have children or grandchildren who need a solid church program then please visit St. James Brethren Church at 17718 Lappans Road, St. James, Maryland. Or for more info just check out their website at

Our Residents Enjoy a Fantastic Dinner Theater

Our residents were treated to a special dinner theater performance at St. James Brethren Church in St. James, Maryland.

The dinner theater was ‘Adventures in Odyssey,’ based on the wildly popular radio/video series of the same name.

The theater show was presented in two parts. The first part was called “Kids Radio”. It was about the kids putting on a radio show at Whit’s End. And as with any production, the kids faced problems and challenges while trying to put together their radio show which lead to team meetings, brain-storming and a whole new production.

The second part of the show was “The Big Production” and was based on the parable of ‘The Good Samaritan’.

If you are a fan of ‘Adventures in Odyssey,’ then you know that it’s not a true adventure without the three main characters, Whit, Connie and Eugene. While the roles of Whit, Connie and Eugene are important, the play also featured the talents of the cast in many supporting roles.

In addition to a great play, guests were given a delicious spaghetti dinner and ice cream sundaes for dessert. There’s nothing better than a good dinner theater!

St. James Brethren Church performs a dinner theater each year to raise money for various events. Proceeds from this years performance is going towards a youth group mission’s trip next year. This year’s performance was presented May 19-20 with the dress rehearsal on May 18. Our residents are invited to attend the free dress rehearsal each year.

Our residents always enjoy this dinner theater experience. Getting away from The Hope Center for fun events like this is important to the progress of the men in the program. We appreciate St. James Brethren Church for always thinking of our men and inviting them to take part in the dress rehearsal. The guys always enjoy being able to interact with the cast and members of the church who put on the production.

We are so thankful for Sara Moore, and the rest of the great staff and volunteers at St. James Brethren Church who always give a great performance and serve a wonderful dinner! It may have just been a dress rehearsal for the cast and crew but it was a great night out for our residents!

St James Brethren Church is located at 17718 Lappans Road in St James, Maryland, just south of Hagerstown. For more information about the church or the youth program, please call 301.582.3333 or visit their website at

If your church, civic club or drama group would like to invite our residents to attend a show, please call us at 301.739.1165 or email us at to make arrangements.

They’re Back!!

The kids from St. James Brethren Church didn’t get enough the first time they volunteered so they came back for more!

And we are so happy they did!

This time the group was a little bit larger and super excited to get to work. The last time the young people from St. James stopped by they helped to pack food boxes. This time we had them pack some food bags for our food bank ministry. The group got right to work and finished in no time!

After all the bags were filled with food, the group was assigned to help organize personal care items and also fill personal care bags. The personal care bags are full of items like soap, shampoo, a toothbrush, toothpaste, razor and deodorant. These bags are given to transient men who stay in our overnight shelter as well as men who are residents of our program.

The youth group had a good time packing the much needed personal care kits as well as helping to separate bags of soaps, shampoos and other items for future use.

We greatly appreciate the work that these young people did for us. Preparing the food bags was a tremendous blessing. Keeping food bags stocked to hand out can be a very time consuming project. And we’re constantly handing out personal care kits to our overnight guests so it’s nice to have plenty ready to hand out.

We want to thank Sara Moore, the leaders and the young people from St. James Brethren Church for coming back and helping us! The enthusiasm of these young people is exciting! They were so happy to help out and get involved that they were already talking about coming back!

The future looks bright when you see young people, like the kids from St. James, so excited to serve the Lord and help others in need. To see kids with such servant hearts is a wonderful sight!

Thanks again, Sara & the BYIC youth group! You’re welcome back anytime!!!

If the young people from St. James have inspired you or your group to get involved in some way, please contact Becky Shank at 301.739.1165 or

If you would like more information about the BYIC youth program at St James Brethren Church or you would like to know more about the church itself, jump over to or connect with the church on facebook.

The BYIC youth group meets every other Sunday in the ministry center at the church from 4-6pm. All youth from 2nd-12th grades are welcomed to attend. St. James Brethren Church is located at 17718 Lappans Rd in St. James. In addition to the monthly meetings, St James also has a summer camp program, Kings Kids Summer Kamp, for kids in grades K-5th. The church also has a state accredited child care program for infants of 6 weeks to 12 years old.