The seventh Hope House benefit singing will be held this Sunday at 6 p.m. at Mountain Pointe Ministries. The church is on U.S. 231 south just beyond mile marker 247, about seven miles east of Oneonta.
The church choir and ensembles will host choirs of Cleveland First, Straight Mountain, Bethel, and Mulberry Baptist churches, the latter three newcomers to the fundraising series. Each choir will present a short program of songs. Chris Green, Cleveland First minister of music, coordinates event music.
“We’re overjoyed to host it at our church,” said Mountain Pointe Ministries spokesperson Katrinka Bryant. “Come, no matter what church you attend. We all serve the same Lord and this is a wonderful opportunity to come together and get to know each other better as a community.” She said the nursery will be open.
The popular singing event was instituted to support charitable projects of Hope House, beginning with the Blount County homeless shelter. The event is free, but an offering is taken at the conclusion of each service.
Hope House director Bud Jones said the need for support for those in need has exploded this year, reflecting the battered economy.
“The money we collect at these singings helps people who have lost their homes, mobile homes, apartments, or who can’t pay their utilities or who don’t have anything to eat. We have at least 100 families in the county right now who are essentially homeless. For the last two or three months, we’ve averaged at least 10 cases a day having no food or no place to sleep. That’s compared to maybe two or three a week last year. So far, the needs are being met, but it’s a tremendous strain on our resources. I don’t see any relief until the economy improves, by early next year, I hope. This event continues to help us cope with crises.”
Mountain Pointe Ministries occupies the site that was formerly Straight Mountain Church of God. The recentlycompleted sanctuary, seating 400, opened for worship on Father’s Day this year, Bryant said.