Mercy Matters

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Serving the Immigrant Population in Lancaster, S.C.



Born in the Spring of 2015, Mercy Matters became a 501 ( c )3 non-profit organization with the goal of providing BASIC assistance for people in need, both locally and abroad, by working with communities and by supporting other organizations and teams.


 * Local *

Consistently, we have worked with a local, Lancaster, S.C. community made up of neighbors from Guatemala, Honduras and Mexico to provide very basic items of food (rice, beans, canned or fresh vegetables, etc.)  to simply subsidize the families while they get on their feet.  We have formed relationships with these families and have also helped with school supplies, Christmas gifts and used/new clothing for the children.  Currently, there are approximately 65 children included in 25-30 families.  We have also held small Easter and Christmas parties and a mini Fall Festival.   We also work to connect donors to those people in need (with used furniture, household items, baby items, etc.)

*International *

Internationally, we have worked on Food distribution teams and well-drilling in Nicaragua, helped in the College John Wesley school in Haiti and have supported an unreached village in Honduras by sending plastic Christmas shoeboxes directly to them.


While still in the growing stage and small in numbers, we support the following groups with our hands, feet and financial resources:

  • Beds Equal Dreams
  • Servants With A Heart
  • Operation Christmas Child
  • Living Water International
  • Samaritans International, Nicaragua
  • Harrison’s Haiti Team and College John Wesley



You are welcome to GET INVOLVED by volunteering for events and/or contributing items for the local Lancaster community!

All donations can be dropped off at the donation closet in Plummer Building  * Please Label Your Donations “MERCY MATTERS”

Watch for updates and photos by connecting with us on TWITTER (@mercymattersnc, FACEBOOK (mercymattersNC) and INSTAGRAM (mercymatters)

Contact us with any questions! or (704)756-9539


Gethsemane Garden Christian Centre

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Who does Gethsemane Garden Christian Centre serve?

  • Kenyan children who have been orphaned, primarily by the tragic toll of AIDS.  Located on Mfangano Island in the middle of Lake Victoria, GGCC serves the Suba tribe primarily.  Concurrent with the formation of GGCC,the founder and director of GGCC, Naphtaly Mattah, translated the bible into the Suba language.  GGCC has served as a light for a region that knew only darkness.  The Holy Spirit at work there has literally transformed much of their nation.
  • Gethsemane Garden Christian Centre raises funds to provide 625 students pre-K through grade 12  food, school supplies (including Bible), school and sports uniforms, lodging, healthcare, buildings, and pay for administrators, cooks, maintenance, security, teaching staff, and house parents.
  • Secure sponsors for each orphan (encouragement, support, prayer, letters)
  • Summer mission trips to Kenya

When does Gethsemane Garden Christian Centre serve?

  • Child Sponsorship Sunday (HUMC) – TBD
  • Summer Mission Trips to GGCC in Kenya – July 7, 2016 to July 21, 2016 & July 14, 2016 to July 28, 2016
  • Various fundraisers such as :  Golf Tournament, 5K, luncheons, desserts

What specific purpose does Gethsemane Garden Christian Centre serve that no other ministry duplicates?

  • Working with GGCC helps us as Christians to follow Jesus’s commands in James and Acts to “look after the orphans in their distress”, and to share the gospel to “all the ends of the earth”

“Religion that God our Father accepts as pure and faultless is this; to look after orphans and widows in their distress…” James 1:27

“But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit has come on you, and you will be My witnesses in Jerusalem, in all Judea and Samaria, and to the ends of the earth.” Acts 1:8 

  • It allows the opportunity to form ongoing Christian relationships with beautiful loving people on the other side of the earth.

What opportunities are open for new volunteers who want to try serving Gethsemane Garden Christian Centre and how do they get connected?

  • From sponsoring a child, to going on a mission trip, to helping with established fundraisers or creating new ones…these kids just need someone to love who will love them back.  Contact us and we we can explore how God has uniquely prepared you to help.

Gethsemane Garden Christian Centre Contact Information:

Mike and Ann Kendall and their 3 children (Harrison members) have spent time at GGCC, sponsor children, and are members of the GGCC-USA Board. You can contact them by Clicking Here.

The GGCC-USA office is here in Charlotte:
Rev. Bill Smith
Executive Director
Gethsemane Garden Christian Centre, USA
PO Box 713
Matthews, NC 28106

College John Wesley Haiti

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Who does this Ministry Serve ?

The students and staff at College John Wesley in Cap Haitian, Haiti.  College John Wesley is a primary and secondary school with a total enrollment of approximately 300 students, most of whom are from families of poverty.

How does this Ministry serve ?

Harrison Church has partnered with the school to set up a daily lunch program with nutritious meals from Stop Hunger Now, which are provided at no charge.  The shipping and customs fees are paid for by Harrison Missions Ministry and are shipped from the U.S. to Haiti 3 times per year.  Harrison teams travel to Cap Haitian several times a year to weigh and measure the children as required by Stop Hunger Now, build classroom furniture, paint walls, and make general repairs.  Additionally, Harrison has provided funds to purchase water cisterns, replace charcoal cooking grills with a propane stove, and remodel the kitchen.

How Can You Serve in this Ministry ?

There are a numbers of ways to support the Harrison Haiti Missions

  •  Travel to Haiti as a part of a team.
  • Sponsor a student with a monetary donation to pay tuition.


College John Wesley Update   

  • A small group recently traveled to Cap Haitian to host a mini VBS type program for the 1-6 graders at College John Wesley.  Our focus for grades 1-3 was “Trusting God.”  The students enjoyed skits, stories, songs, and crafts as we looked at  Biblical heroes who remind us to fully reply on God in all circumstances……Daniel in the Lions’ Den, David and Goliath, and Shadrach, Meshach, and Abedego.  The older students (3-6 grade) spent the three days exploring aspects of prayer – Praise, Confession, and Thanksgiving.  In addition to participating in songs, skits, “object lessons,” and crafts, the students wrote their own psalm of praise, prayerfully and privately  wrote “sins” on small slips of paper and then tore them into tiny pieces, and made a prayer bracelet based on The Lord’s Prayer.  To end our time together, all of the primary students and staff enjoyed an ice cream party – a big hit for all!
  • The Harrison Haiti Ministry Team recently voted to fund a well for the school and church to provide clean water.  The drilling should begin within a week.  Please pray that the drilling company is successful in reaching water. They are optimistic that this will happen.  Your support of our Rummage Sale has helped to make this possible.
  • We hope you enjoy a few pictures from our trip!

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Red Bird Mission

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Red Bird Mission.  Guided by Jesus Christ, empowers individuals and advocates justice by providing spiritual, educational, health, and community outreach ministries.

Red Bird Mission and Clinic have been providing ministries in the eastern Kentucky region of the Appalachian Mountains since 1921. Today the need remains critical in this isolated, rural distressed area.  Chronic poverty, lack of jobs, poor housing, and rugged mountainous terrain provide obstacles to a fuller life for the residents of this area.  Red Bird Mission strives to meet these needs through ministry in five areas:  Education, Health and Wellness, Community Outreach, Economic Opportunity, and Community Housing Improvement.

Support for these ministries come from churches and individuals across the nation. In recent years there has been a decline in the support they are receiving. They are currently facing a financial crisis that is making it difficult to continue all the areas of ministries they provide.


We serve the people who live in three of the poorest counties in America.  These counties surround Red Bird Mission, a mission of the United Methodist Church. In April and June of each year we send teams to Red Bird Mission where we work through the work camp to rehab homes for the families who live near the mission.  Each team stays a week on the campus of Red Bird Mission. We involve families from many churches in the area, acting as the consolidation point for the teams.  We specifically serve a mission of the United Methodist Church in a very poor rural area of eastern Kentucky.

Watch this video to see what a mission trip to Red Bird Mission is like –




  • We have a Team trip to Red Bird Mission in April of every year. The 2018 trip is April 22nd – April 28th.  The dates for 2019 will be announced in the near future.


Everyone is welcome to join us on any of these trips.  They can contact either Bob Gourlay (April trip) or Sally Ainslie  (June Trip).

To find out more about Red Bird Mission you can visit the website


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Mission Trip forms


Red Bird Mission Trip


Room in the Inn

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Since 1996, the Urban Ministry Center has partnered with colleges and congregations of many faiths to open their facilities to provide shelter and food for homeless people during the winter months. Each site offers a warm, safe place to sleep, serves two meals (dinner, breakfast) and then returns guests the following morning to uptown Charlotte. The program offers a unique way for people of faith to become directly involved with individuals who are homeless. The basic goal is to keep homeless people from freezing on cold winter nights. A greater goal is to provide a more personal relationship to homeless people, at least for a night, and to foster a deeper understanding of the depth and complexity of the issue.

How Room In The Inn Works

Participants come to the Urban Ministry Center around 4:00 p.m. for a carefully formatted intake and registration process. Each person is breathalyzed and must show state-issued identification or receive a waiver from our staff. Each person is entered into our database to help us determine who’s using the program and how often. An off-duty police officer is onsite at all times.

Last year, 135 congregations, colleges and YMCA’s partnered with us. On any given night, we have 10 to 15 host sites throughout Charlotte, each taking in 12-14 homeless people on their assigned evening. These organizations pick up our neighbors and then take them back to the host facility for a hot meal and an evening of movies, fellowship and other activities. In some cases, our homeless neighbors can use telephones, showers and laundry facilities. The host group recruits volunteers who spend the night with their homeless neighbors, serve breakfast in the morning and then drive the neighbors back to uptown Charlotte in the morning.

Each year, 5,000 Room In The Inn volunteers throughout the community help in some way: registering neighbors, driving, making dinner and serving dinner, chaperoning overnight, making snack bags to give the neighbors when they leave or simply sharing a meal and conversation.

Writes one grateful neighbor:

“For moments each night, if I am fortunate, I sleep not as homeless in the street, but with warmth and friendship, thanks to Room In The Inn. Somewhere during the evenings of friendly faces, piping hot showers, videos and jokes, laughs and sharing a smoke break, I was transformed from homeless to someone with a misfortune.  I no longer view the world from ground level, where each may look down on me. I view the world from ground zero, where each may view my launch. I thank you, all who volunteer for this program. You have given me fortitude, I am sure that I am not alone in this.”

We need you these coming months so we can continue to serve

If you have questions or want more information, please call Brenda Johnson at (803) 984-0948


Click the Sign Up button to find an available opportunity to serve.  We NEED your support.



To find out more about Room In The Inn you can visit


Loaves & Fishes

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Who does Loaves & Fishes serve?

We meet the basic hunger needs of people in our community by providing access to nutritious food.

How does Loaves & Fishes serve ?

Loaves & Fishes provides a week’s worth of nutritionally balanced groceries to individuals and families experiencing a short-term crisis through a network of 23 emergency food pantries located throughout Mecklenburg County.

Therefore, we are guided by the following core values:

  • Dignity:  We believe that all people have inherent worth. We are committed to equitable and inclusive treatment. We strive to provide quality service to our clients.
  • Stewardship: We efficiently leverage donated resources and volunteer time to further the mission of Loaves & Fishes.
  • Collaboration:  We will work with a diverse group of organizations, public and private, to ensure optimal service to our clients and to avoid duplication of services in our community.

Where and when does Loaves & Fishes serve?

Every Tuesday and Thursday at the Harrison Church Food Pantry in the Community Outreach building, we serve clients between 10:00 a.m. – 1:00 p.m.  Now serving on the first and third Saturdays of the month from 10 a.m. to 12:00 p.m. as well.

What opportunities are open for new volunteers who want to try serving with Loaves & Fishes and how do they get connected? 

Loaves & Fishes needs weekly volunteers to rotate on/off the calendaring to ensure we have ability to serve the clients who arrive.  Please send an email to or  by clicking here. We will give you important information about available dates to serve.  We are always interested in new volunteers and training will be provided.

Current pantry needs :

  • 100% fruit juice
  • Canned peaches
  • Canned pineapple
  • Canned mandarin oranges


To find out more about Loaves and Fishes in Charlotte you can visit the website

Charlotte Rescue Mission

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This ministry serves men in the Charlotte Rescue Mission’s Rebound program. It is a program that ministers to men in crisis, hopelessness, and/or addictions. Every other month, we purchase ingredients and prepare an evening meal to serve to the men in the Rebound program. Most importantly, we share Christ’s love with these men by our presence, our willingness to listen, talk, and laugh while sharing this meal with them.


We serve at Charlotte Rescue Mission Rebound, in downtown Charlotte, by preparing and serving dinner to the men on the first Sunday of the even months of the year. This ministry offers an opportunity for individuals and families with children, of all ages, to engage in service and fellowship in a friendly and safe environment. Volunteers have the opportunity of serving, as often, or as little, as their schedules allow!


On the first Sunday of each even month of the year, we meet at 3:45 pm at Hammill Hall to drive to the Rescue Mission.  We return to the church around 6:30 p.m..

New opportunities to serve at Charlotte Rescue Mission coming in 2018 –

  • May 6th
  • June 3rd


Everyone is welcome to come and help serve! If you have questions or want to let us know you are interested, contact Brenda Johnson. You can even just show up at 3:45 pm on the first Sunday of the even months! We will look forward to seeing you!

To find out more about Charlotte Rescue Mission you can visit the website

Beds Equal Dreams

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The Beds Equal Dreams ministry provides beds and bedding to children at schools in the Charlotte-Mecklenburg School system in North Carolina and the Lancaster County School System in South Carolina who do not have a bed to call their own.  Many of these children are homeless or are in transitional housing.  Additionally, Beds Equal Dreams is working to expand the ministry to other schools in the local area.  We have partnered with Arlington Baptist Church in Mint Hill and St. John UMC in Fort Mill to expand our reach.


We have Build-A-Bed events to construct our easy-to-assemble bed frame from donated lumber.  In the past, these events have involved almost 100 people from the community and church.  We provide Tempur-Pedic mattresses for the beds.  Most of our bedding has come from donations bought around the particular likes of the children.  In our bedding package we supply linens, pillows, blankets, pajamas, and a stuffed animal or toy


  • Build relationships between the church and community
  • Practice good stewardship by driving the cost out of supplying the beds
  • Build a sustainable ministry by soliciting long term financial and in-kind support
  • Protect the dignity of the families involved by asking for a small donation and requiring that the family provide transportation

Watch the video to see what Beds Equal Dreams is all about

video button


Build-A-Bed Events – Twice a year we have Build-A-Bed events to construct our bed frames. The Build A Bed event have been tremendously successful in the past with upwards of 140 individuals involved in the event.  We are often asked “what is a Build A Bed event?”.  The video below shows what a Build A Bed event looks like.

Beds Equal Dreams Build A Bed

Upcoming Build-A-Bed Event

Sign up to take part in our next Build A Bed Event this spring.  We will be building 25-30 beds for our spring distribution.  We will post a SignUp Genius signup when we firm up the date.

Pick your time and station.



Distribution Events – Four times a year we have bed distribution events to give out our beds.


Distribution Volunteer Form



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  • Adopt a child – provide financial resources to support the acquisition of bedding and beds.  Make checks payable to Harrison Church – Beds Equal Dreams.

    Adopt a Child Form
  • Provide the bedding package for a child – provide the bedding items specific to a child (linens, blanket, pillow, pajamas, stuffed animal).  


“Thank you so much for all that you did for our students. My students and their parents are still talking about how grateful they are and the students are truly enjoying having their own bed.”

Shirnetha Stinson, Ed.S.. Principal, Brooklyn Springs Elementary School


Bed Frame Instructions
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