The Mission Marketplace has closed as of June 25th, allowing WRM to refocus on the greater needs of our community in Addiction Recovery and Food Insecurity
A Letter to Our Community... from Executive Director, Stephanie Halley
As a people of faith, in a long tradition of serving those who are struggling in our midst, the Mission has sought to meet the greatest needs in our community with compassion. Over the years, the Mission has offered three distinct yet interrelated ministries – help with addiction, providing food support, and operating a thrift store. These areas often overlap. In our beginning days and over the years since that time, the Mission met two needs at the same time through its thrift store – the need for some individuals to work productively while healing from addiction, and the need for families in the community to be able to access affordable goods, or, when the hardship is great, goods at no cost. One of the blessings of ministry is when others come alongside to help meet those needs. In the decades since our inception, we have been blessed by other community groups rising up to answer the call to meet the local thrift needs. We are blessed by our friends at NESAP, Shepherd Staff, Second Chances, and Restore, who are giving a second life to local gently used goods, selling them for well-below-market value as a way to love our neighbors.
At the same time, other needs in the community have been escalating. God is constant and unchanging, but our world is not. In particular, the rampant affliction of addiction has had a tremendous human cost. Overdose deaths alone have skyrocketed over 35x the number of deaths since we opened our doors in 1968. Food insecurity has also intensified, not just in the inner cities, but right here at home in Carroll County. The United Way of Central Maryland’s 2018 ALICE Report (Asset-Limited, Income Constrained, Employed) indicates that in Carroll County communities including Westminster, Taneytown, and New Windsor, more than 34% of households cannot afford food.
What we know to be true is that to bring about the kind of transformation that needs to take place in our community, we need to work in partnership with others, and we need to choose how we can be of the greatest service. No one person or organization can or should be all things to all people. That role is the Lord’s. Our job is to identify two things – where the greatest need is, and how our gifts and resources can best be used to meet that need. “At the point in life where your talents meet the needs of the world is where God wants you to be.” - Albert Schweitzer
In order to do just that, the Mission’s leadership has clarified our role moving forward in our new Mission statement:
The Westminster Rescue Mission is a community that provides clinical, physical, and spiritual resources to heal the addicted and feed the hungry. We take a holistic approach with Christ as the foundation of our work.
With this refined direction, the Mission will soon celebrate 55 years in ministry (in 2023) by heading into that new year with a vision that offers support for transforming lives while being good stewards of our resources. To that end, and in order to focus our efforts on effective addiction treatment and filling the gap in food security, our team will be closing our thrift operations as we have known them. On June 25th, we will close our thrift store’s doors for sales to the general public. While the loss of a good shopping experience and convenient place to donate used goods will be missed, we believe that the resulting impact on our life-transforming ministries and the people they serve will be well worth the change.
To this end:
· Donations for the Mission’s thrift store will be closed after June 11
· Last day for the store is Saturday, June 25th
While we walk through closing our store for sales, our team is working alongside of our partners to identify ways we can support the community together with them, while remaining focused on our priorities. We look forward to sharing with you what those partnerships and plans look like in the months ahead, as we know our supporters will want to be a part of this work with us.
Thank you for the many ways you support the work of the Mission – whether it has been through donations of used goods, volunteer time in one of our service areas, financial resources, or pointing people in our direction when they are in need.
If you have any questions, as always, please don’t hesitate to reach out to us.