“He has shown you, humankind, what is good;
so what does the LORD require of you, but to do justice, to love kindness, and to walk humbly with your God…” (Micah 6:8)
The Micah Ministry is the urban, ecumenical outreach mission of Independence Boulevard Christian Church to the poor and needy in the historic Northeast area of Kansas City, Missouri. The Micah Ministry is a C.U.I.C. mission (“Churches Uniting in Christ”) designed to encourage Christian unity, end racism and “feed my sheep.” (John 21:15-17) It is centered around a table ministry of home-cooked suppers in which faith-based and civic volunteers partner and seek to embody the call to evangelism by heeding the words of the prophet Micah.
Urban Pastoral Counseling
Every Monday evening, for three hours each time, specially trained suburban-based clergy from 7 denominations donate their time to staff a free, urban core ministry of compassionate presence and pastoral support to disadvantaged neighbors of our church. Local pastors, chaplains, diaconal and retired clergy, and advanced seminary students work together in teams of 2 or 3 to envelop neighbors in need with focused listening and affirmation. We make available the sacraments, anointings, group problem-solving, good-conditioned used clothing and service referrals. Lay church members provide intake.
Alcoholics Anonymous combined with Al-Anon
We have a combined AA/Al-Anon group that also meets during Micah time.
Supper Ministry “Robert's Cafe” & Clothing Pantry
“Those who are kind to the poor, honor their Creator.” Proverbs 14:31
Monday evenings from 5:30-7:00 pm, free, nourishing suppers are provided to our neighbors in the church's capacious Fellowship Hall. This “cafe” ministry, drawn from Jesus' injunction that if we truly love him, we should “feed his sheep,” is principally staffed by church members, metropolitan civic and religious volunteers and advanced urban ministry seminary students. Darrell Cantrell is our Executive Chef.
Our core cooking team serves excellent homemade meals and desserts and sets long tables decorated with white tablecloths. Unlike most feeding ministries, we serve our guests at the table, rather than having them stand in a line to be fed. Thousands of people have volunteered at Robert's Cafe over the years and this experience is always open to youth groups and other visiting friends who are passionate about justice ministry and developing their own servant leadership.
“Robert's Cafe” is named for the builder of our church, Robert A. Long, and one of our longtime guests from the neighborhood, Robert, who died in the winter of 2002 at 46, after sleeping outside overnight. All disabled guests are seated before regular serving begins.
While Independence Boulevard Christian Church provides a central core of the funding for the feeding ministry, many area ecumenical communities, businesses, youth groups and civic organizations generously provide the remaining financial support. Without this, we would be unable to provide the 35,000 plates of hot, home-cooked suppers we served up in 2010. With advance notice to Pastor Lee, who oversees the entire ministry and sets serving dates, we welcome Camp Fire, Girl or Boy Scouts and other groups to come, meet, feed and befriend our neighbors at Robert's Cafe.
Additionally, we maintain two well-stocked clothing pantries that are open most Monday evenings. Karen Robinson maintains our Children's Clothing Pantry, and Robbie Robinson and Sharon Cantrell organize our Adult Clothing Pantry. Volunteers from “partner” churches sew winter hats, blankets and booties and assemble "health kits" for the pantries. Clothing is dispensed as our guests eat at the table without appointments. It is not uncommon for us to hand out a thousand pantry items on any given Monday.
Articles & Information about the Micah Ministry
In season of giving, atheist groups’ charity rebuffed - Religion News Service
Kansas City Food Ministry Helps Show The Face Of Christ To The Needy - Disciples News Service
Staying Warm - Blue Springs Journal
Northwestern Mutual Insurance Company grant to the Micah Ministry (2007)
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