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The Celtic Cross Mission Society serves as the missionary “hands” of the seminary, raising both funds and awareness, while engaging in direct community outreach.
Charitable organizations in the San Francisco Bay area and across the globe received 2014 Celtic Cross Mission Grants totaling more than $20,000, strengthening work on behalf of refugees and new immigrants, literacy programs, supplemental nutrition, environmental advocacy, and disaster preparedness. [ See a five-minute video of this year’s grant recipients. ]
A team of students reviews the grant applications, and researches needs, to present recommendations to the seminary community. Two of the grants given this year were in recognition of CDSP’s partnerships with Ripon College Cuddesdon, near Oxford, England, and Ming Hua Theological College in Hong Kong. Each of these grants is being sent forth with a student to shepherd a mission project.
Much of the focus of Celtic Cross in the fall is on raising funds, primarily through parking cars on Cal football game days – turning the parking lot into mosquito nets, clean water, teaching supplies, food for hungry bellies, and more. This becomes mission evangelism, as students share stories of the projects with those who use the parking lot, connecting them with the Good News they are helping to support. Celtic Cross also raises funds by operating a vending machine at the seminary, and is the recipient of community night offerings to support the annual grants process.
Celtic Cross is about more than raising funds and writing checks, though. Follow on Facebook to see how you can engage in hands-on mission at local food pantries and shelters, and connect with others to participate in advocacy and support for neighbors in need through a variety of local projects. The seminary prepares and serves meals at the Winter Interfaith Shelter in San Francisco, and last winter several students participated in an urban mission immersion retreat through Celtic Cross. The organization also sponsored a community forum on urban mission in Spring 2014.
All members of the CDSP community, including faculty, staff, students, spouses, and partners, are considered members of the Celtic Cross Mission Society.
Applications for 2015 mission grants will be available February 1 and are due March 15. View a sample application, or for more information, contact the students at CelticCrossMissionSociety@gmail.com.
Twila Smith serves as the Celtic Cross missioner for 2013-14.