Baker Memorial’s Newest Ministry

We realize there are many needs in our community. Lazarus House and Baker Memorial’s Day Guest Program are in our local community to provide basic needs of food, clothing, and shelter. This shows love, care, and compassion.

Many in our community have other needs as well such as legal aid. Legal issues are often the root of poverty and homelessness, and while 20% of Americans qualify for legal aid with housing, employment, and healthcare, less than half will find that help. In fact, every second someone is turned away from legal aid due to lack of access.

Baker Memorial wants to do something about this injustice, and to that end has partnered with Administer Justice (AJ) to become the next  Justice Center. AJ is a nationwide organization headquartered in Elgin, IL that partners with congregations to empower vulnerable neighbors with the help of a lawyer and the hope of God’s love.

We are inviting you to be part of making a difference. We all have special gifts and talents that are needed to launch this ministry. We hope you will prayerfully consider what your gifts are and how they can best be used to administer justice in our community. Baker Memorial UMC’s Justice Center will be open for 3-4 hours on the third Saturday of every month beginning in July to provide legal advice and coaching to clients through a caring team of volunteers. Here are the volunteer opportunities:

  • Attorneys: Are you a lawyer? Do you have a contact or network of lawyers? Use your law degree to serve, empower, and bring clarity to vulnerable neighbors.
  • Client Intake: Are you organized and efficient? Support others with your administrative tasks to take information from the client and ensure it is correct.
  • Hospitality Specialist: Use your hospitality, service, and encouragement to provide a welcoming environment by greeting the clients warmly, helping them feel at ease, and serving refreshments.
  • Childcare: Caring for the children (if present) so the parents can focus on their meeting.
  • Prayer warriors: Offer prayer on site and/or off-site.
  • Client Advocate: Come alongside others to encourage, listen, provide guidance, and offer prayer. Help clients review what was said to the client by the lawyer and make sure they understand their next steps in the process.
  • Interpreter: One who can fluently speak, read, and write Spanish (or any other language) and to facilitate communication between the lawyer and the client.
  • Community Advocate: Helping to market the Justice Center to the community

Go to tinyurl.com/AJVolunteers to become part of this ministry and let us know which position you are interested in volunteering. There will be an online training video for each role, once you decide what role you would like.

If you have questions, please contact Betty Erickson at 630.701.5672, Diana Seymour at diseymour@yahoo.com, or Kim Starr at kimberlyannstarr@gmail.com

Learn More About it!

There are two information meetings to choose from. We encourage you to attend and learn more about Administer Justice. Feel free to invite someone you know who may be interested in this ministry.

  • Sunday, May 22 at 10:15am, come to an in-person meeting immediately following worship in Wiley Hall.
  • Tuesday, May 24 at 7pm, join a Zoom meeting at tinyurl.com/BakerUMCMeetings.