A Blessing to the Ministry: Loving Moms Classes
By Mrs. Laura Gruetzmacher
Christian Life Ministries’ New Day Center in Little Canada, MN, started its “Loving Moms” classes in June 2010 by former CLM Center Director, Sharon Kurtzahn. The weekly client attendance started slowly, averaging between one and four moms. In early 2013, a Spanish-speaking class was added to the program.
Today, we are privileged to lead two Loving Moms classes: on Thursdays for our Spanish-speaking clients (primarily a one-hour Bible study) and on Fridays for those who speak English (these classes include parenting and life skills topics). A devotion begins each class.
During the past two years, the weekly attendance has grown to about 40-50 moms between the two classes! Blessings indeed!
When a mom or father attends a class, the parent receives a package of wipes and a bundle of diapers along with a $5.00 voucher. The voucher can be used in our center-run Mission Wearhouse Thrift Store to purchase clothing or a “color of the month” item (an item at a reduced price). The client can opt to earn a new Pack-N-Play or a car seat by collecting 20 vouchers and exchanging them for one of those large-ticket items.
To encourage the client to arrive at the class in a timely manner we give them diapers, wipes and a voucher. Late attendance means the loss of the voucher; extreme lateness means the loss of the wipes as well. Believe it or not, this recommendation came from the clients themselves to encourage one other to arrive on time.
As a result of the classes, a wonderful support system has developed between the moms. The clients range between those who recently became pregnant to those with young children. They share their victories as well as their struggles. For many of these women we have become their safe haven. Another feature of the class – something our clients and their families really enjoy – is that we serve a fruit, a vegetable and a sweet treat along with water and coffee. On Fridays, the clients can even take home some of the leftovers. We have noticed that for many of the children this food may be their first for the day. Sometimes the parents haven’t eaten in several days.
Karen Hennig serves as our Spanish leader on Thursdays. She is a very gifted woman who not only conducts the Spanish Bible study but also mentors the clients on a one-on-one basis as needed.
Our Friday classes are conducted either by our Client Services Director or a guest speaker. Topics have included: child safety, diaper care and hygiene, infant care, budgeting, marriage and relationships, self-care, crafts projects, etc. A few times each year the classes include a potluck – always a fun event.
While the moms are in Bible study/class, the children enjoy play time in our lobby, and we share a Bible story time followed by a craft project. We are given the opportunity to share God’s Word to the children, between five and ten in the cold months to as many as 30 to 40 in the summer. A copy of the shared children’s Bible story is also given to the participants in the Loving Moms class in hopes that the conversation about the Bible story carries over into the home.
Our ministry at the center continues to grow with many of our clients inviting family and friends to attend the classes. Others come to us via Internet postings. With every client opportunity we share the good news of their Lord and Savior! Many of our clients come from a large variety of nationalities and backgrounds. Several have never heard of baptism or the free gift of eternal life. We see the Holy Spirit take hold in their hearts after the seed is planted. We also have had the opportunity to baptize several of the clients and their families who otherwise may have never heard the Word of God. God amazes us daily at the center as he leads people to cross our threshold so we may be his disciples and share his Word to those who have fallen away or have never heard the good news.
EDITOR’S NOTE: Christian Life Ministries is one of 18 life resource centers affiliated with Christian Life Resources.
New Day Center has served the Twin Cities area since 1985. It provides a safe place where anyone facing an unplanned pregnancy can find honest answers and positive solutions.
New Day’s 24-Hour Helpline: 651-644-3937
Location: 2756 Lake Shore Avenue, Little Canada, MN 55117
May 4, 2018
October 19, 2017