Not that long ago, events that closed down Lakeshore Road on Sunday mornings were seen as a problem. Now, Holy Cross is ecstatic when the street is closed. The congregation took a perennial problem and met it head on. It has transformed Holy Cross into a helping community.
The Chilly Half Marathon (and Frosty 5k) raise much needed funds for our local hospital. The races also bring a much needed economic benefit to Burlington's downtown restaurants and businesses in one of their slower times of the year. Holy Cross wanted to support making Burlington an even better city of live in.
So, now with help from Longo's and VRPro, Holy Cross is out on the race course handing out oranges and bananas to the runners who come past the building on the Sunday morning. Our pastor is invited to bless the race before it begins at City Hall each year and rushes out to join the volunteers in distributing the food as soon as Sunday worship is over.
Guided by the vision of members of one of the churches in Holy Cross' area of Burlington, we joined forces with other local congregations to combat two issues facing seniors: food and fellowship. Making good, and nutritious food on a daily basis can be a tiring prospect for some seniors (particularly those who live alone.) Getting out and being with peers can be a struggle as well (as people age, they often move to different communities where family members have moved years ago.)
Getting good, and nutritious food is not only a challenge for seniors, it can be a challenge for anyone in the community. Often the cost of fresh fruit and vegetables is an impediment for people to purchase them, and they make less healthy choices because their funds only go so far. To help address that situation, Holy Cross hosts a monthly Good Food Box program (with a break in the summer) on the fourth Friday.
Holy Cross is blessed with a wonderful facility. At times, the building didn't get much use. Now the building is reaching full use on a daily basis. Rentals from various community groups, and the city allow this resource to be shared with a lot more peope than just members of the congregation. Holy Cross is a helping community and proudly rents out space to groups who can use it.
Christmas Family Support
Poverty is often unseen in Burlington. However, Holy Cross often encounters people who are poor through the programs, events, and meetings that take place in the building and beyond. As a helping community, Holy Cross works to alleviate some of the challenges that poverty imposes. The need for help becomes even more visible near the end of the year, as Christmas is celebrated. Holy Cross provides support to families who need help Christmas and throughout the year due to the generous donations that people make.
Worship at Tansley Woods LTC
Over the years, Tansley Woods has grown from a Long-Term Care facility to now include a retirement residence. Holy Cross has been blessed by providing worship at Tansley Woods on a monthly basis for a number of years. Currently a group gathers at 3:30 on the last Tuesday of each month (with the occasional exception of vacations and rescheduling) to worship and share in Communion.
Holy Cross owns approximately seven acres of land on the north side of Lakeshore Road, just west of Walkers Line in Burlington. The worship space, and parsonage (house) sit on that land. That leaves a large section of land available for other uses. A large section of the land has been converted into a community garden. Plots are available to rent by members of the community. For more information please email the office.
Like many members of the community, members of Holy Cross were moved by the plight of Syrian refugees. Unsure of how Holy Cross could respond to the need of sponsoring a family, members attended a meeting hosted by the City of Burlington, and soon contacted people outside the congregation to form a refugee resettlement team. Relying on advice and direction from Canadian Lutheran World Relief, Holy Cross (and the members of the greater Burlington community) has sponsored a family of five from Syria. The family has adapted to life well in Burlington.