Midtown: Community

Southbridge Fellowship congregants respond to generosity challenge

On the Sunday after Easter, each worshipper at Southbridge Fellowship Church in Raleigh was invited to open an envelope. Inside were three pieces of paper, each containing a random act of kindness and generosity. Some envelopes suggested buying coffee for the next person in line, while others included fasting for a meal and donating the money to feed the hungry.

“The goal was to spur one another on to love and good deeds,” said the church’s lead pastor, Scott Lehr. “We encourage one another to be generous because God has been so generous with us.”

The church was founded on the principle of serving the community in the name of Jesus. Church leaders thought the activity was a great way to continue to spur the congregation to look outward, Lehr said.

The congregation responded to the challenge in a big way. One woman conducted a prayer walk in her neighborhood by walking her streets and praying for those living around her. Another member fueled the car of a stranger in need. When a church member’s co-worker mentioned that he hadn’t been paid in a few weeks and didn’t have enough money for gas to get home, the Southbridge member handed his friend the money he needed.

Member Tom McPhatter actually found himself on the receiving end of one of the random acts of kindness. Another member washed McPhatter’s car and rotated his tires, while his own car sat dirty in the driveway.

“I was really blown away by his kindness. I don’t even rotate my own tires,” McPhatter said. “It was almost the modern day equivalent of washing each other’s feet. It was wonderful to receive such a wonderful act of love and service.”

For more information on Southbridge Fellowship, call 919-789-9955 or visit www.southbridgefellowship.com.

20th Anniversary of Sunday Night Live

Fairmont United Methodist Church is celebrating the 20th anniversary of Sunday Night Live at 5:30 p.m. Sunday, May 5, at the church, 2501 Clark Ave., Raleigh. The service started as a way to bring people to God who don’t typically come to worship on Sunday morning. The focus was on special needs adults, homeless people and those who have never attended church. The service has developed a loyal following over the years. Volunteers drive residents from the Healing Place to the service each week.

A hot dog supper will be served for $5 per plate to support the church work team’s upcoming mission trip to Haiti. The Fairmont Gospel Revue will perform at 6:45 p.m., followed by Sunday Night Live at 7 p.m. For more information, call 919-832-3316 or visit www.fairmontumc.org.

Hudson Memorial Presbyterian Church

The music ensembles of Hudson Memorial Presbyterian Church will present their second annual spring concert at 6 p.m. Sunday, May 5, at the church, 4921 Six Forks Road, Raleigh. The theme for the event is peace. Guest artists will include Timothy Holley, professor of cello at N.C. Central University, and Erin Munnelly, principal flute with the Durham Symphony. The choirs of Hudson are led by Philip Haydon and include the chancel choir, handbell ringers, youth ensemble and children’s choir. A reception for the public and performers will follow the concert in Westminster Hall. For more information, call 919-787-1086 or visit www.hmpc.org.

Sing-O de Mayo

Saint Andrews Presbyterian Church will hold Sing-O de Mayo at 5 p.m. Sunday, May 5, in the church parking lot at 7506 Falls of Neuse, Raleigh. Five food trucks will sell food: Sweet Traditions, Chick-N-Que, American Meltdown, Klausie’s Pizza and Captain Poncho’s Tacos. The Connections Service praise teams and the youth band will perform. Bring lawn chairs. In coordination with North Raleigh Ministries, the missions committee will collect gently-worn shoes. For more information, call 919-847-1913 or visit www.sapc.com.

St. Francis Run for Peace/Walk for Wellness

Registration is open for the St. Francis Run for Peace/Walk for Wellness, which begins at 8 a.m. Saturday, May 18, at St. Francis of Assisi Catholic Church, 11401 Leesville Road, Raleigh. A half-mile fun run will begin at 8:45 a.m. Baby joggers are permitted during the race; pets, bicycles, skates and skateboards are not allowed. Entertainment and wellness-related activities will be held after the race. Proceeds will benefit the David J. McBriar Endowment Fund for Justice and Peace, which helps to fund ministries in the Triangle. Before May 17, the cost is $20 per individual or $50 per family of four. After May 17, registration is $25 per individual or $60 per family. T-shirts are guaranteed to participants who register before May 12. To register, visit www.fsseries.com.

Do you have some faith news to share? Send it to correspondent Jennifer Gregory at nrnews@newsobserver.com. For events, please give us two to three weeks of notice.