Spring Benefit 2022: Celebrating Community
This year's Spring Benefit was the first one we've held in person since 2019! We loved celebrating community with everyone together in one room. For us, community is our extensive network of affiliate partners, church partners, donors, volunteers, Young Supporters, and more.
Our event was at Midtown Loft and Terrace, which had incredible views of the Empire State Building and the surrounding midtown neighborhood. Co-hosts Pastor Aaron Chung of Exilic Church (who also hosted our Virtual Spring Benefit last year) and Pastor Sarah Bourns Crosby of Hope Midtown (who was a part of our YSC church partners event) were funny and engaging with our audience. Both pastors focused on the three Christian pillars of Pray, Serve, and Give.
"Triple Threat": Pray, Serve, Give
As Sarah pointed out, "Our theme for the evening is the 'triple threat' Pray, Serve, Give. You’ve heard that in the Broadway community of those who dance, sing and act. Well, as followers of Jesus, our triple threat is praying, serving and giving! Also, our trio theme is fitting! I’m here 'times three'—yes, I'm pregnant with twins. Thankfully, not triplets, but the theme of three works well for me. "
Pastor Aaron shared ways the Exilic congregation has serving our affiliate partners (like Center for All Abilities, City Relief), following our monthly Prayer Guide, and giving generously toward various campaigns and events. Pastor Sarah also shared ways Hope Midtown's congregants have supported affiliates such as City Relief, Do For One, and Habitat for Humanity. Several affiliate partners also attended our event, including leaders from: Center for All Abilities, City Relief, Do For One, Expect Hope, New Beginnings Center of Hope, The Salvation Army, and Urban Hope.
To engage our community further, we encouraged everyone to submit prayers. Some attendees submitted prayers before attending the event; we printed their prayers and shared them on tables. Other attendees shared prayers during the eventing. We also had tables to encourage volunteer sign-ups and to learn more about our Young Supporters Community.
Also, our giving goal for Spring Benefit—to fund the work of Hope for New York and our affiliate partners—was $200,000. At the start of the night, we were almost 70% to goal; by the end, we were 86% to goal. Our raffle prizes also went toward our giving goal. To date, we have now reached 90% (and counting)!
At the end of the night, Pastor Sarah also shared a benediction to bless all our guests:
We bless you with the courage to say yes to God’s invitation
We bless you with the humility to lay aside your own expectations
We bless you with wonder to lift your eyes and see with His kingdom vision
We bless you with wisdom to pursue your call in His great mission
We bless you to be bridge builders on the path of reconciliation
We bless you to partner with Jesus in the weighty work of redemption
We bless you as faithful stewards of your own unique vocation
We bless you with friends who will join hands in the long collaboration
We bless you with the grace to extend compassion again and again and again
We bless you with the urgency to take a risk and just begin
We bless you with the strength to go wherever he might send
We bless you with the hope to endure until the very end.
May the peace of Christ dwell here below
May the joy of the Spirit well up and overflow
May the love of the Father stretch wider than you now know
And may the presence of the triune God
carry you as you go.
(May it be so).
Fun Ways to Remember the Night
For everyone who celebrated with us, we're thankful you supported Hope for New York's community! Even if you couldn't attend, you can still see and hear highlights from Spring Benefit.
- See beautiful photos of the entire night taken by Albert Cheung
- Listen to DJ DRUU-curated Spotify playlists heard during the event: Cocktail Hour | Ambient Music | Dance Mix
- Check out #hfnyspringbenefit on Instagram for more photos
We hope to see you next year!