Over the last several years, the Self Denial targets for many corps have been decreased or remained unchanged. Not so for the Long Beach Temple Corps. Not only has their target increased, from $32,000 in 1994 to $40,000 in 1998, but they have consistently raised a significant amount above this.
Corps Officers Majors James and (Dr.) Sallyanne Hood communicate their belief in Self Denial to their soldiers. Having served at the Catherine Booth Hospital in Nagercoil, India, for 12 years, they let their soldiers know of the positive benefits Self Denial funds made to their work.
The Hoods share brief missionary vignettes at least one Sunday each month to keep the congregation focused on giving to Self Denial. They are encouraged to give a small amount each week, which can amount to a substantial sum.
More missionaries speak at this corps than almost any other. Overseas officers on furlough are encouraged to spend time at the corps also.
Territorial and divisional headquarters have approved their keeping extra funds raised above target for a special trust account administered by their Corps Council. Since the account was established in June 1996, they have sponsored $8,000 toward a new diesel van for the Seoul, Korea, Children’s Home, and $2,500 toward a new respirator for the Evangeline Booth Hospital in Ahmednagar, India, where Majors Ted and Ros Mahr are stationed. They are currently working toward assisting with the purchase of a boat for the work in the Marshall Islands.
Half of this money comes from regular giving of soldiers; 25 percent from corps-associated groups; and the balance from a mail appeal designated for Self Denial.
Rather than detracting from regular corps giving, this has increased by over 35 percent from 1994 to 1997. The Hoods set special times for teaching stewardship, which has resulted in more participation by local officers as well as financial sharing.
The corps has Sunday night meetings, too. If you are in the area, drop by–you might learn something!