- More than 1,300 pounds of food grown at Koinonia distributed to local food banks and neighbors in need.
- Managed three community gardens in Sumter County, facilitating work days that fostered relationships between residents of the County and visitors to it. Food harvested and shared with neighbors and the local food pantry.
- Through a relationship with Healthy Sumter and Albany Flint River Fresh (headed by a former Koinonia intern), Koinonia packed over 1,600 bags/boxes of locally-grown produce and distributed it to area food banks and those in need.
- Continued to work on Tuesday mornings and some Monday mornings at Harvest of Hope, Americus’ local food pantry.
- Through a relationship with Concrete Jungle (Atlanta), gleaned over 10,000 pounds of corn at a nearby farm. Corn distributed to those in need in rural and urban areas as well as rural and urban food banks.
- Served more than 6,000 meals in the Koinonia dining hall for guests, interns, neighbors, strangers, family, staff, and members.
- Delivered 35 meals to families who lost loved ones, who were ill, or who lived alone. Continued to work on soil biology and sharing what was learned. Healthy food comes from healthy soil.
- Increased the chicken flock to 30, collecting and sharing an estimated 240 dozen eggs.
- Welcomed 1,433 guests to Koinonia, of whom 392 stayed overnight at least one night. This number includes 15 groups: colleges, churches, and others.
- Served lunch and gave a tour to an estimated 773 people.
- Provided one-on-one spiritual direction for those who requested it (in Koinonia’s membership, one ordained minister and one formally trained spiritual director who provided spiritual direction and met with people regularly).
- Chapel conducted five days a week, and Gathered Worship each Sunday.
- Through the relationship with the Sumter Area Ministerial Association (SAMA), worked twice monthly at its Community Services Ministry, a program to help people short of cash to pay utilities, fill prescriptions, and meet mortgage and rent payments.
- Hosted the Holy Thursday worship service as part of SAMA’s Holy Week initiative and provided lunch after service.
- Welcomed a refugee mother in need and her five children and provided a home for them for eleven months. A refugee couple moved to Koinonia in July 2023.
- Provided shelter, comfort, and food for a homeless couple and their infant for a week.
- Worked with the Carter Center to provide housing for their staff during Mrs. Carter’s funeral services.
- Visited shut-ins and those living alone or in retirement communities.
- Continued Hospitality Beyond Borders ministry making trips to Stewart Detention Center to deliver clothes for those being deported from the U.S.
- Resumed visitation at Stewart and other prisons now that COVID protocols have been relaxed.
- Served as a weekend host at El Refugio Hospitality House – a place for families visiting loved ones at Stewart to stay. Provided housing when El Refugio ran out of space.
- Exchanged correspondence with those incarcerated as well as visiting with them via video call.
- Worked with immigration attorneys to help get legal status for the undocumented.
Internship/Come, Stay Awhile, & Serve:
- Continued the internship program by hosting three seasonal internships as well as a year-long internship.
- Continued offering four Come, Stay Awhile, & Serve terms a year.
Youth & Elders:
- Held Camp Koinonia, a residential summer camp for both local youth and youth from all over the Southeast.
- Met to make plans to expand Camp Koinonia.
- Hosted a number of activities for youth in Sumter County who attended Camp Koinonia and their friends.
- Hosted Circle of Friends meetings, a gathering of elders who come together for fellowship and service.
- Provided support and education to individuals who live with chronic and genetic conditions.
- Provided rides to medical appointments as requested.
- Introduced a clothing ministry to Harvest of Hope. Koinonia brought clothes to distribute. The response was so successful, that Harvest now offers both food and clothes.
- Sent a group to help with the Fuller Center’s Millard Fuller Legacy Build.
- Sent a group to help Casa Alterna (Atlanta) remodel a home that the organization purchased to host immigrants as they arrive in the U.S.
- Shared information with fellow farmers, neighbors, guests, and anyone interested regarding what we have learned so far about growing pecans organically. Koinonia is one of two farms in Georgia growing certified organic pecans.
- Offered education about fairly traded goods, which allowed another opportunity to share our beliefs about human rights, justice, peace, and sustainable farming. Koinonia uses fair trade ingredients and sells fair trade products wherever possible.
- Provided education about raising chickens, sheep, and a pig.
- Served in the Sumter County community by individual calling – played music in retirement communities, taught religious education classes in local churches, and served on the board of directors of the Sumter County Chamber of Commerce a few examples of in 2023.
- Spoke at conferences and wrote articles and reflections.
- Continued to incorporate elements from different Christian traditions into our prayer and worship services as another way to provide welcome and promote the cause of ecumenism. Also included the study of other faith traditions in the internship program and in other study sessions held from time to time.
- Supported a Koinonia member to continue serving as an on-call chaplain at Phoebe Hospital.
- Helped various neighbors and friends move – usually elders moving into retirement facilities.
- Continued to provide a supportive workplace environment to as many people as income allowed.
- Assisted with acquiring Christmas gifts for 54 children.
Koinonia continues to sow seeds serving as an incubator of sorts. Individuals are transformed by their experiences here. Multiple organizations have sprung from its red clay. They began as a Koinonia ministry and then moved on to become a separate entity serving a particular cause of social justice.
As a people of faith, we work to feed the hungry both physically and spiritually.
Koinonia has entered its 81st year, and we carry on.