Prayer and Social Change

"It is not so true that prayer changes things as that prayer changes me, and then I change things; consequently we must not ask God to do what He has created us to do. For instance, Jesus Christ is not a social reformer; He came to alter us first, and if there is any social reform to be done on earth, we must do it."

~Oswald Chambers  

A Message from 441

Hope - Healing - Holistic Development


This past Saturday just after we had returned from escorting several children home and were about to pray for all in attendance at Kids Club, three shots rang out across the street from 441’s ministry center. Two boys who had just gone home were playing in their front yard and were quickly taken indoors by their mom. While I was on the phone with 911 a couple was having a domestic dispute at the bus stop on the corner. The Rochester Police were quick to respond and thorough in their investigation, and quickly began to search for the men seen fleeing the area. Fortunately no one was struck by the bullets this time, one was found lodged in an apartment doorway and another passed through a living room wall close by. The past few weeks have seen an escalation in violent acts throughout Beechwood, a homicide, several shootings and stabbings, several large fights, and a corner store manager beaten for asking young men to watch their language in front of his establishment.

    We are so thankful for the years of support that have enabled 441’s Kids Club, Teen Mentoring, Summer Meals, Community Garden, New City Cafe, Farm Stand, and Bike Repair Clinic to keep going and provide gospel opportunities, we know those we serve are safe in our facility, and they are thankful for our presence.

    The heart of the matter is we would like to do so much more, the corner store at Parsells and Greeley seems to be a magnet for much of the violence close to us, three shootings and two large fights have occurred on that corner. We have a vision for turning it into a full service market that could offer a healthy array of groceries and fresh produce, as well as nutrition/cooking classes. The laundromat on the opposite corner is in disrepair and our neighbors are constantly dealing with washers and dryers that don’t function properly, as well as a change machine that doesn’t always dispense the expected change. Unfortunately this laundromat is the only source for clothes washing that is within walking distance for many neighbors without private transportation. We would love to see this become a true asset to our neighbors, rather than a source of despair. The market and the laundromat could also become a source of employment for our neighbors, just as the New City Cafe has. There have also been preliminary discussions about creating a property management firm that could also become a source of employment in our neighborhood.

    The truth of the gospel is at the heart of all we do, or hope to do in Beechwood. Those of us who have answered the call to move in and be good neighbors are keenly aware that we could leave if things become too difficult, but the vast majority of the children and their families do not have that option. We desire to see our neighborhood flourish in spirit, mind, and body and are inviting you to partner with us. We do have big dreams, and even as I write this, I fully realize I don’t know what it’s like to be part of a family that has never had the opportunity to get ahead due to generational poverty, and that certainly is the case for many in our community.

    We would welcome the opportunity to share our work and vision with you in more detail, in the meantime, we invite you to explore our website: or our Facebook page: to glean more about our work in Beechwood. Both sites will enable you to donate to 441, whether a one time gift or an ongoing monthly sustaining basis. If you would prefer to avoid the surcharge from PayPal, checks can be sent to:

441 Ministries Beechwood, Inc.
PO Box
Rochester, NY 14609

Thank you in advance for standing with us and our neighbors in Beechwood!


Paul Whitehouse, Executive Director

Verses to Ponder

“Is not this the kind of fasting I have chosen: to loose the chains of injustice and untie the cords of the yoke, to set the oppressed free and break every yoke?  Is it not to share your food with the hungry and to provide the poor wanderer with shelter— when you see the naked, to clothe them, and not to turn away from your own flesh and blood?  Then your light will break forth like the dawn, and your healing will quickly appear; then your righteousness will go before you, and the glory of the Lord will be your rear guard.  Then you will call, and the Lord will answer; you will cry for help, and he will say: Here am I. “If you do away with the yoke of oppression, with the pointing finger and malicious talk,  and if you spend yourselves in behalf of the hungry and satisfy the needs of the oppressed, then your light will rise in the darkness, and your night will become like the noonday.

Isaiah 58:6‭-‬10 NIV

 I was struck this morning by how much is in these verses: there's sacrifice in serving the poor and oppressed; when we serve the poor and oppressed God is glorified (light shining from the darkness); and when we're trying to put off sinful behaviors such as malicious talk, we should put on serving others (a different angle to serving that I haven't thought of before). What stands out to you?



The Source of Joy

"Joy is the result of the perfect fulfillment of what a man is created for. It is continually necessary to revert to what the New Testament asks us to accept about ourselves. Our first accepted vocation is not to help men, but to obey God, and when we accept that vocation we enter into relationship with the despised and the neglected."

~Oswald Chambers, The Psychology of Redemption, 1915

Want to use your nursing or financial skills to reach souls and save lives?

CompassCare has two part-time paid positions available where you can use the expertise and training you've received for the kingdom. 


Are you an RN with a passion to serve "the least of these"?
CompassCare is looking for mature Christian nurses (RN license required) who wish to merge their medical degree and love for Christ in their job. Position includes serving women seriously considering abortion and helping them continue their pregnancies.
Position is flexible, 8-15 hours per week. All training will be provided. Please contact Kathy at kathy.mauer@compasscare.infofor more information.

Do you have a background in finance?
CompassCare needs a Finance Manager who wants to use their finance and accounting skills for the mission of saving preborn babies and their mothers from the horror of abortion. The position requires a passion for Christ, accounting acumen, and half-time availability.

Please contact Carolyn at Carolyn.marcuccio@compasscare.infofor a job description.


A Story of Healing

Janice came to CompassCare for an initial pregnancy appointment. She lives at home and is finishing up her senior year of high school. Janice came to the appointment with her friend’s mom.

The tears started during her ultrasound as she stared at her active nine week old baby on the screen. And the tears kept coming the rest of the appointment as Janice wrestled with the implications of her situation. She left this first appointment undecided about what to do.

The following week Janice came for a second appointment by herself. She shared in more depth why she can’t continue her pregnancy: school, plans for the future, financial difficulties, and her boyfriend wants her to get an abortion. Her nurse realizing how much Janice needed help sorting through her circumstances was encouraging her to come back as many times as she needed. Janice confessed to having an abortion appointment scheduled at Planned Parenthood the following week. Her nurse talked with her about cancelling so that she could have more time to figure out what she really wanted to do.

The Planned Parenthood appointment was cancelled and Janice came in for her third appointment with a close friend this time.  Her friend really engaged with the baby during the ultrasound, oohing and aahing over his movements and shape. Before leaving, Janice agreed to come back another visit and possibly bring her boyfriend.

Janice’s fourth appointment involved doing another ultrasound, thankfully the boyfriend present for this one. He was clearly overwhelmed by the whole situation and the room was thick with tension. Her nurse had the opportunity to go over the abortion risks and side-effects information again, with him present. Although he said very little during the appointment, it allowed for more time and conversation between him and Janice, who was still determined to get an abortion.

Janice and her boyfriend came in for a fifth appointment and went over in some details the tensions causing them to consider abortion.  Janice’s nurse took the opportunity to have a separate conversation with the boyfriend and hear what he was thinking. The fact that he came back was a good sign.

Janice, now over 13 weeks pregnant at this point, came in for her sixth and final appointment. She came with her boyfriend again and it was immediately obvious that their attitudes had changed. They were light-hearted and laughing together. Near the end of the appointment, Janice’s nurse asked them what their plans were for this pregnancy. Janice and her boyfriend looked at each other and excitedly announced they were planning to carry to term!


Northridge Partner Mission Share - Seasonal Needs

With winter upon us outreach programs face new challenges in helping those who are in need.  Mission Share is a gospel-centered ministry partner of Northridge Church's that provides food and clothing for those who qualify.  MS serves primarily the Greece and Charlotte areas, and it operates out of its facility at 10 Cedarfield Commons, Rochester, NY 14612  (near Long Pond and Latta Roads). 

Mission Share is able to keep its supplies of food and clothing stocked primarily through the generosity of individuals and organizations who donate these items as well as monetary donations.  MS can accept donations at the above address during normal business hours.  It would be good to call first (585-368-0744) to make sure someone will be there to accept your offering; they can also provide suggestions regarding what their greatest needs are and what items will be of most use. 

If you prefer, you can donate money to help MS with purchasing food supplies and operating its many quality programs, and you can even specify which program your money will be applied to.  Secure on-line donations can be made at 

Thanks for considering helping Mission Share as they continue to demonstrate God's love in practical ways.


Serving is typically not as hard as you might think.

Serving is typically not as hard as you might think.

Open Door Mission (ODM) serves many women, children and men, in many capacities, using multiple facilities.  The needs in this city are great, and keeping this system of serving going (in some cases on a 24/7/365 basis) takes a lot of effort by staff and volunteers.  But that doesn’t mean volunteering necessarily has to take a lot of individual effort. 

How To Talk About Poverty

We all love to be heroes. We love to know we are making a difference. And this, unfortunately, affects the way we talk about poverty.

When we talk about giving or serving to make a difference in the lives of the materially impoverished. We almost always talk about the negative -- starving children, slums, filthy water, lack of education... But we rarely talk about the potential for success and the skills/talents/ability that those people bring and we almost never let them speak for themselves.

Because of our need to be saviors from the first world swooping in to save the poor third-worlders, we speak for them when they are more than capable of speaking for themselves.

We might mean well, but the way we talk about the materially poor gives them very little dignity and robs them of the voice they have.

Craig Greenfield wrote a brief but powerful article about how we talk about poverty.

See the original article here:
How to talk about poverty without being a jerk

New City Cafe

One of Northridge Church’s 2016 Advent Conspiracy partners is 441 Ministries, a local Christian non-profit organization whose mission to “partner with local churches and other like-minded organizations to bring hope, healing, and holistic development through the proclamation of the gospel of Jesus Christ to the Beechwood neighborhood of Rochester.”

One of its new, exciting ministries is the development of a new coffee shop, the New City Café.   441’s vision for the café is “to see our neighborhood flourish, by promoting economic development and Christ-like business principles with a youth-centric approach.  As an employer, New City Cafe will focus on professional development, equipping teenagers with the necessary skills for careers later in life.  As a ministry, New City Cafe will focus on spiritual growth by mentoring teenagers to develop Christ-like values."

This is real “rubber-meets-the-road" ministry, and the gospel is central to everything 441 does.

The café is scheduled to have its Grand Opening on Friday June 9, and you can support their mission by simply stopping in soon to get a cup of coffee!  The café is located at 441 Parsells Avenue, right in the heart of the Beechwood neighborhood. You can also check out their Facebook page: