Our Ministries

Oak Forest United Methodist Church, a classic landmark stone church in Little Rock, needs you!

All Christians are called by God, through their baptism, to be in ministry in the world. Therefore, the term minister is appropriately used to describe any Christian who responds to God's call to reach out to the world and its people through loving acts of service. The ministers of the church are called to serve in a variety of ways.

We are a community of believers with a heart for those in need and we answer the call of dicipleship through our wide ranging ministries.

We average about 80 people for Sunday worship and our goal is to grow to 120 every week.

If you are looking for a place to belong
A place that celebrates you and your talents
A place to sing and pray
A place to volunteer in our health clinic
A place to learn
A place to grow as a Christian
A place to think and let think
A place where you are accepted and loved and challenged

Then join us Sunday mornings at 10:50 for Worship. And we would love to have  you share in our ministries during the week...


Shepherd's Hope Center
-
Free Medical Clinic


For those who do not have insurance and cannot afford to see a doctor, Oak Forest United Methodist Church has partnered with Fellowship Bible Church to form, Shepherd's Hope, a community based clinic open every Thursday from 5:30 p.m. to 9 p.m. We have been blessed with doctors, nurses, receptionists, and pastoral counselors. We are working hard to welcome and heal in the name of Christ. Come join us! Park in the church parking lot off 25th Street and Fair Park and look for the clinic. Look for the wooden ramp off the back of the parking lot that leads to the clinic.  Serving those people who do not have insurance who live in the 72204 zip code area.
 Medical Clinic on Tuesdays and Thursdays
 5:30 to 9 p.m.
  Call 614-9523
 
 
Dr. Brenda Covington,
Medical Director of Shepherd's Hope


Dr. John Ransom and Dr. Preston Jackson, two of our good doctors!



Dental Clinic Ministry
The dental clinic is open BY APPOINTMENT. Right now we are only performing extractions (pulling teeth). We serve people from 72204 and 72209.




Vision Clinic  Ministry...Bart's Place





Thanks to Wal-Mart and volunteer doctors, our Oak Forest Eye Clinic, Bart's Place is now a reality.

BART’S PLACE UPDATE…

We have added a new photocopier to the eye clinic.

The last quarter of 2011 we served 87 patients.  Most of those patients received a pair of glasses.  Many patients needed bifocals.  

 

In January, we served women from Dorcas House.  This is a program for victims of domestic violence and women who are in a drug and alcohol program.

 

A physician from the Little Rock Eye Clinic provided a pro bono laser surgery for one of our patients and we have a cataract surgery scheduled for a grandmother who is originally from El Salvador on Feb. 15.  Pray for our vision ministry and our patients.  We especially thank God for our optical techs who serve beside the doctors.

To qualify for the vision clinic you need to: 

Not have any insurance

            Be Employed

            Meet the income guidelines

            Be a Shepherd’s Hope patient

              or a resident of 72204 or 72209

 

Call 614-9523 to schedule an appointment.

 

The Vision Clinic is located in Oak Forest United Methodist Church, waiting area is Fellowship Hall. 

We have two complete vision lanes with two chairs, slit lamps with applanation tonometers and two

 

phoropters.  Jack Stone who installed the equipment says we are probably the best equipped charitable eye clinic in Arkansas.  

Dr. Ted Penick will be our clinic director.  He is an opthamologist from the Deer Penick Eye Center on Markham, and a member of Pulaski Heights UMC. 

Dr. Susan DeBlack, an optometrist from Conway will also be volunteering.  Dr. DeBlack is a member of First UMC, Conway.  We also have five optical technicians who are on board.   

Thank God for these good doctors who are coming to Oak Forest to be our partners in ministry.  Glad to get some United Methodist doctors on board!


God is blessing us.  Byrdie McSwain has agreed to be our clinic manager and Gloria Minor will assist her.








We always welcome donated "gently used" eyeglasses, if you have had laser eye surgery and do not need them any more. We welcome your donation!






From its earliest days, Methodism has been a lay movement. The term laity comes from laos, which means of the people. The laity are the whole people of God, who serve as ministers witnessing to the work of God in individual lives and in the world.




YOUR GIFTS of TIME, MONEY, ENERGY AND SERVICE are always welcomed.
Everything that we have comes from God and we are asked to be good stewards of those resources that God has given us.  This giving of our resources is our joyous response to what God has done, what God is doing, and what God calls us to do.  This giving of our resources is a part of living out our promise of "prayers, presence, gifts, and service" in the name of Christ.

What shall I return to the Lord for all his bounty to me?  (Psalm 116:12) 





Ozark Mission Project

We bring together youth and adults for service in the spirit of Christ to individuals and families, called neighbors, who are in need of minor construction and yard work. In addition to the physical service projects, we strive to meet social and emotional needs by spending part of our time visiting, sharing lunch and a devotional with our neighbor, if the neighbor so chooses. OMP does not demand specific requirements, such as race, age, income or religion, in the selection of our neighbors.

We also encourage new partnerships through the gifts of time, money and prayer. Every year, over 250 people volunteer with Ozark Mission Project. It is a labor of love that returns blessings on all of us. Our volunteers are the backbone of OMP and we couldn’t do it without them!

There is a place for you at OMP. We encourage diversity in our campers and our volunteers. After reading about our unique camping experience, contact us about sharing your gifts and graces to benefit our brothers and sisters in Christ. You will not only be a blessing to someone but you will be amazed at the blessings you will receive.

Spencer Brown paints at OMP


United Methodist Women


United Methodist Women is the largest denominational faith organization for women with approximately 800,000 members around the world whose mission is fostering spiritual growth, developing leaders and advocating for justice.


UMW Circle Meets the 2nd Wednesday
at 1:30 p.m.

United Methodist Women is a community of women whose purpose is:

  • To know God and to experience freedom as whole persons through Jesus Christ
  • To develop a creative supportive fellowship and
  • To expand concepts of mission through participation in the global ministries of the church



We welcome new members and are always excited to share about the many ways that United Methodist Women are involved in mission...making a difference, every day, in the lives of women, children and youth...around the world, and in our own communities.


 


Open Hearts, Open Door Food Pantry

The Food Pantry is open THE FIRST AND THIRD FRIDAYS OF THE MONTH.  We served our neighbors in need who live in the 72204 zip code area.

 

"Some of You wonderful folks have told your friends and family that rather birthday presents the gift be a can of food or donation to the pantry.  What a wonderful idea and what a blessing!  Thank You so much for your thoughtfulness. "

                                       ____Mrs. Linda Pringle



Matthew 25 Food Pantry


"For I was hungry and you gave me something to eat, I was thirsty and you gave me something to drink, I was a stranger and you invited me in, I needed clothes and you clothed me, I was sick and you looked after me, I was in prison and you came to visit me.' "Then the righteous will answer him, 'Lord, when did we see you hungry and feed you, or thirsty and give you something to drink? When did we see you a stranger and invite you in, or needing clothes and clothe you? When did we see you sick or in prison and go to visit you?' "The King will reply, 'I tell you the truth, whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers of mine, you did for me.'"

We take seriously our responsibility to those who are hungry and need food. Through the donations of the members of our congregation, we have established a food pantry that supplies staple food items to those in the community who may be hungry and in need.

Together, we want to alleviate hunger from people in our community and promote healthier food choices for a healthier community.




 

Oak Forest UMC and Shepherd's Hope are partnering with the UALR School of Social Work.  This semester graduate students who are specializing in family therapy will offer services to our clients from the clinics and our food pantry.






Pastor Mike Blanchard

God is calling us to grow spiritually and in numbers. We are looking for members who are not afraid of the work of the gospel. We are looking for members who need to find a place at the table where they can be loved and appreciated for who they are.  Help Oak Forest tell our story of success and to seek out the lost, the sad and the lonely to join us. Invite your friends and neighbors to join us in "The Stone Church."   May this holy place be a place where God's grace is found and the power of the Holy Spirit lives.

Here is a vision for the church that is found in our United Methodist Hymnal:

"When the poor ones who have nothing share with strangers, when the thirsty water give unto us all, when the crippled in their weakness strengthen others, then we know that God still goes that road with us." 

"When at last all those who suffer find their comfort, when they hope though even hope seems hopelessness, when we love though hate at times seems all around us then we know that God still goes that road with us.

 UM Hymnal  434

Let's keep on walking down the road!
 





Our Daily Ministry

For those who are alert to the needs of others, each day abounds with opportunities to serve. We minister with our families as we inquire about one another’s lives, as we listen and respond with care, as we touch, as we smile and offer a kind word, and as we decide questions and reconcile conflicts. We take time to listen to a friend in need and we respond; this is often the greatest gift we can offer. We minister at work, to both co-workers and those we serve. We minister in the neighborhood or the shops as we go about the day’s work.




Inspired by the example of Jesus and empowered by God’s love for us, we all carry out our ministry, both individually and together with others.

For monetary gifts, and volunteer opportunities contact the church office:  (501) 663-9407



From the Pastor …

“For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the LORD, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.” – Jeremiah 29:11 (NIV)

Are you are worrier?  Do you worry about what shoe is going to drop next? Do you sometimes find yourself worrying about problems that MAY happen but have not actually happened yet?

Maybe you don't worry.  Maybe you are one of those people who just ‘goes with the flow’.  The future is coming whether we worry about it or plan for it.  The truth is many circumstances in our life are beyond our control, but we do have one choice… the choice to decide to be content with whatever comes.  I, like some of you, worry about our small numbers in worship.  I love to say "We do so much for a small church" but I'm not sure God is calling us to stay a small church.  It's not enough to have wonderful outreach ministries if we do not invite people in to be a part of the church.  We are called to be in ministry WITH the poor not just in ministry To the poor. 

I believe that God has great plans for Oak Forest United Methodist. 

We can't see the future and some of us may not get there, but I believe this community of faith's future is good.  God has a plan for this church.  God keeps blessing our medical ministries.  We are the only United Methodist Church in the state of Arkansas to my knowledge that has a medical clinic, dental clinic and now a vision clinic.  Corporations are blessing us, foundations are reaching out to us and now it is time for our congregation to continue reaching out.  I need you to bring in people to our community of faith.  You have neighbors, family and friends who do not have a church home.  Invite them to worship with us.  

Most visitors like Oak Forest when they come see us.  They tell us..."the spirit of God is in this place."  Let's pray that God will lead us to call and invite people who need a relationship with Christ and with a community of faith. 

See you in church this Sunday,

  Mike








GiftLegacy Program Can Help You With Your Plans

Making important life and death decisions is part of being a faithful Christian disciple, and the United Methodist Foundation’s new GiftLegacy program is a valuable resource for individuals dealing with family issues, healthcare concerns, current and future finances, estate planning, and charitable giving.

GiftLegacy includes complete information from a newly expanded website, an online or printed Wills Planning Guide, and Provide & Protect Seminars that can be requested by any United Methodist Church in Arkansas.  Go to www.umfa.org or contact Foundation Vice President of Development Janet Marshall at 501-664-8632, toll-free at 877-712-1107 or jmarshall@umfa.org.










New volunteers are always welcome!  Contact our pastor, Michael if you are interested in joining any of these exciting ministries.