"'...And who is my neighbor?'...He said, 'The one who showed him mercy.' And Jesus said to him, 'You go, and do likewise.'"

-Luke 10:29-37

MERCY MINISTRIES

Below are the specific areas the Mercy Ministries Team at Grace Community have been led to focus on. If you believe the Lord has gifted you and is calling you to pour your life into one of these areas, please contact Thomas & Lauren Black through our Contact Page.

Mercy Ministries Overview

Prison Ministry

There are currently 300-400 inmates serving time at the Loudoun County Adult Detention Center. Furthermore, in the nearby cities of Culpepper and Mitchell, there are hundreds more who are serving time and are in need of knowing the grace of God. These figures do not include the need at the Loudoun County Juvenile Detention Center, as children serve out sentences for crimes they have committed, with the hope that they will learn the error of their ways. The problem is even more significant when you consider the National Institute of Justice reports, over 75% of those who serve time in prison will be arrested again within five years of their release. Government policy will not solve this problem. These inmates have a spiritual problem that must be addressed by the Body of Christ.

Crisis Pregnancy

Too many young women who are experiencing an unplanned pregnancy have no idea what the church is about, or what the gospel of Christ offers. In fact, many women in this situation would assume the Body of Christ (1 Corinthians 12:27) would stand only for their condemnation. These women have never met the Son of Man who said, “Let any one of you who is without sin be the first to throw a stone at her." This must change.

Domestic Violence

According to recent statistics: 1 in 4 women will experience domestic violence in her lifetime, 1 in 6 women have experienced an attempted rape, almost 1/3 of female homicide victims that are reported in police reports are killed by an intimate partner. On average, it takes a victim 7 times to leave before leaving for good.

In many cases, a victim of domestic violence experiences isolation throughout her relationship with her abuser. These tactics often leave victims with no support system in their lives – they lose friendships, and often ties to family. This makes it exceptionally difficult to reach out for help when they decide they want to leave. Even after leaving an abusive relationship, it is difficult to navigate everyday life without a support system. Victims tied to a support system are more likely to be successful in leaving and are more likely to work towards independence.

Orphan Care

Currently, there are over 50 children who are placed in foster care in Loudoun County. That number will fluctuate daily, as Child Protective Services (CPS) regularly removes children from unsafe situations of abuse and neglect. The United Nations International Children’s Emergency Fund (UNICEF) estimates 153 million children are currently orphaned throughout the world. 153,000,000. To put this in perspective, the populations of California, Texas, New York, Florida, Illinois, Pennsylvania, Ohio and Georgia totals approximately 153 million.

Human Trafficking

In Northern Virginia, a common form of modern slavery is Teen Sex Trafficking (TST), which is the act of using force, fraud, or coercion on anyone under the age of 18 to engage in a sexual act in return for something of value. In a region abounding with busy parents and broken homes, traffickers prey on the lonely and vulnerable. Traffickers use staged encounters or social media to recruit their victims, then “groom” them to create a sense of family and belonging.