Social Concerns

Service and outreach to our community and the world are central to who Bethel is as a community of Christians. We live out our faith by service to others. We partner with other organizations locally and internationally to be effective in our mission and advocacy.


Here are some of the ongoing opportunities to serve the wider community at Bethel:

First Friday Program

Bethel members and friends gather on the first Friday of even months for a quick shared dinner and then to serve those in need in our wider community.


Arlington Food Assistance Center (AFAC) Volunteering continues with social distance and masks.

2708 South Nelson Street, Arlington, VA 22206

Arlington Food Assistance Center provides supplemental groceries to Arlingtonians who cannot afford to purchase all the food that they need. AFAC helps solve this problem by distributing groceries – milk, eggs, bread, canned goods, produce and other foods – to Arlington families and individuals in need.

Another way to help AFAC is to donate canned or dry food. Each week we have a box in the foyer outside the church’s main entrance for donations of canned and dry food to be given to AFAC. Neighbors and friends are invited to contribute.

Cereal has been the focus of late and we have donated 732 boxes towards the joint goal with ACOBrethren of 1,000 in 2020.
Suggested other items to drop off include:

  • Mesa (corn flour)
  • Powdered Milk
  • Oatmeal (canister)
  • Cooking Oil
  • Rice
  • Canned Tuna, Chicken or Salmon
  • Breakfast Cereal (low-sugar)
  • Pasta
  • Dried Beans

Annual CROPWALKers

Each year Bethel puts together a team to participate in the CROPWALK.  Held generally the third Saturday in October, the aim of the walk is to help raise money for Church World Service to fight hunger around the world. A quarter of the money collected will come back to Arlington for the Arlington Food Assistance Center (AFAC). In 2012 Bethel’s walkers is $5875.00.  Thanks to our walkers for their efforts in getting sponsors, walking and collecting and especially to all who supported our walkers so generously.  A portion goes to the Arlington Food Assistance Center (AFAC) and the rest to Church World Service for its campaign against hunger around the world. In 2019 our team Bethel and Rock Spring UCC was award a “Cream of the CROP” certificate.


Faro de Luz Clinic Partnership
In a village near the Pacific Ocean in El Salvador, the people of San Luis Talpa live a simple life. Most families live on only a few dollars a day—woefully little to cover housing, a healthy diet, medical care, clothes, and education.

The Clinic makes a big difference for the adults and children in the community. From a church basement, it serves as a center where people can access medical supplies and basic health care services, food, clothing, and help with children’s education. Members and friends of Bethel United Church of Christ in Arlington, Virginia, and Fuente de Verdad, also of Arlington, donate funds needed to staff the clinic with a doctor. The two congregations also collect first-aid supplies; over-the counter medicines such as pain relievers; vitamins; clothing; and other items that are transported periodically to the clinic.

Click here to learn more about the clinic or how to make a donation.