January 18, 2019

Community Potluck for the Furloughed

From the Rector's Desk, Jan. 9, 2019
This shutdown is hard for many in our congregation and community. Federal employees, government contractors, family members, and others are feeling the strain. Some of you have told me that, even though you’ve lived through government shutdowns in the past, this time feels particularly scary. Others have told me that you’re scrambling to figure out your finances, calculating the toll on your savings in the absence of a paycheck. This is a time to come together, to take care of one another, and to take care of our neighbors.

Since the earliest days of the church, the followers of Christ “devoted themselves to the apostles’ teaching and fellowship, to the breaking of bread and the prayers. All who believed were together and had all things in common; they would sell their possessions and goods and distribute the proceeds to all, as any had need.” ACTS 2:42 & 44

St. Columba’s clergy and staff met, prayed, and identified several things we can do for one another:

Come to our Community Potluck for the Furloughed

St. Columba's invites you to a community potluck on Fri., Feb. 15. as we stand with our furloughed parishioners and neighbors. Join us for dinner: Parishioners are invited to bring a "ready to serve" dish for 6-8 people; our furloughed friends are invited to come as our guests. We will gather in the Great Hall at 6:30 pm for an evening of fellowship and support. Please RSVP and let us know what you will bring. Contact: Kathleen Mitchell


All affected by the shutdown are in our Sunday and daily prayers. Please pray for one another.

Gather for Scripture, Prayer, and Fellowship

  • We gather for a simple service of Morning Prayer each weekday morning at 8:30 am in St. Aidan’s Chapel, in the Church Nave (enter through the 42nd Street door or the parish office door on Albemarle).

Meet Financial Need With Financial Support

If you need financial help, please let Rector Ledlie Laughlin know. If you have enough to help someone else, please let him know also. All requests will be held in strict confidence – those who need and those who provide.

Offer Available Resources

From community businesses to large corporations, many are coming forward to help our furloughed government and contract workers, and these offers are easily found on the internet. Many may be facing hardship for the first time, and navigating this list of options may be difficult. Feel free to reach out for a helping hand. Here is some information shared by fellow parishioners:

Friendship Hospital for Animals: "We understand more than most that accidents and emergencies have a way of happening at the worst possible time. While the government remains closed, we are waiving our emergency exam fee and offering deferred/extended payment options for furloughed Federal employees."

Friendship Hospital for Animals, 4105 Brandywine Street NW
Tele: 202.363.7300  Email: info@friendshiphospital.com 

Family-friendly Businesses in the Community Freebies List

Pop Up Food Pantry For Government Shutdown Employees

If you are not receiving a paycheck and work for the government or for a government contractor that is affected by the shutdown, come shop at the Adventist Community Services Food Pantry on Wed., Jan. 23 from 1-4 pm. BRING YOUR FEDERAL OR GOVERNMENT CONTRACTOR ID to: Adventist Community Services of GW, 501 Sligo Avenue, Silver Spring, MD 20910
Questions? Call 301-585-6556 and speak to Ed.

20 Organizations offering discounts, giveaways and payment assistance during the government shutdown. Click here for a list of banks, utilities, and other companies reaching out to help their customers.

Resources and Support for Furloughed Federal Government Employees

City Paper DC Guide to the Government Shutdown

Capital Area Food Bank  Pop-Up Markets
Capital Area Food Bank is holding five free Pop-Up Markets for government employees and contractors affected by the furlough.
Telephone: Please dial (202) 644-9800 or (571) 482-4770
Documentation needed: Please bring a valid ID or federal contractor ID

The Newseum is offering FREE admisstion to Federal employees.
The Newseum is not affected by the current government shutdown and will remain open with normal business hours. Federal employees can receive free admission during the government shutdown by showing their badge in person at the admissions desk.

Northern Virginia Family Service  Shutdown Assistance Website
Email: shutdown@nvfs.org
Telephone: Please leave a message at 571-748-2552. Messages will be returned within 24 hours of receipt.
Documentation needed: NVFS staff can assist clients in determining appropriate forms. Please bring proof of employment (Employer ID to verify employment status) and demonstration of financial need.

The Animal Welfare League of Arlington awla.org
Food pantry for people who cannot afford to feed their pets.
2650 S Arlington Mill Dr, Arlington, VA 22206   Phone: (703) 931-9241