Tuesday, January 31, 2012

What YOU can be involved with!

Don't forget that tomorrow night from 4:00-6:00 we are open for food, clothing, furniture, connection to assistance programs and coffee :) 

Then from 6:00-6:30, we are having our monthly prayer battle, to come together in unity and cover the Center in prayer and to pray for our community. Then from 6:30-7:30 the Men's group will be meeting! Last week there was a great turn out! This is open to any men that want to come! They are working through the book, Wild at Heart, and discussing different situations that men go through. Jesse Miner will be leading the group! 

Also, a reminder that THIS SATURDAY, FEBRUARY 4TH, from 1:00-3:00 we will be having orientation and training at the Center for ANYONE who wants to get involved and help those in their local community! 

I encourage you to be active in your faith! The Christian life is both contemplative and active. We are encouraged through Scripture to learn and to study the Word, but then told to give to others and to share what we ourselves have received. Freely we have received and freely we are to give. 

Saturday, January 28, 2012


HEY gang!

We had such a great time out last night!! A bunch of young adults from the Center and from the community got together and played a few rounds of bowling and then went out to dinner! It was great to meet a bunch of new people and to just have a fun night out on the town! 19 of us went, and we would love to add more to our group!

Today, was Adopt A Block in North Adams and it was a perfect day outside! God blessed us with beautiful weather. It is the end of January and it felt like spring outside as we did our door visits! A lot of people were a lot more friendly then they have been in the past and some new doors opened! We were also able to deliver a couch to a family that requested one today. I love how fast God works!!!

We have coffee on at 12:30 and a full kids program from 1-2! It is going to be an awesome message!!! Come check it out! 41 Cherry St. Pittsfield MA!

Tuesday, January 24, 2012

What Is Happening at the Center and in the Community THIS WEEK!

There are a lot of things going on this week in the community! Take a look below at the upcoming events that YOU can be a part of! 

TONIGHT: There is a meeting at Morningside School from 5:30-6:30. 
            Berkshire Priorities has just committed to a city wide initiative called the All American City Award. The goal is to reach reading proficiency in children ages pre-K to 3rd grade. A meeting will be held to gather information that would be helpful to reaching this goal. Parents and guardians are encouraged to attend and give their input, any and all information is relevant and useful in determining the success of your children.

          This is a time for men in the community to get together and to hang out!  Jesse Miner will be leading the group and sharing from a book that helped him in his life called, Wild At Heart.  Some Wednesday's there will be food and games as well. You don't wanna miss it! This group will be meeting EVERY Wednesday at this time!! 

TOMORROW ( Wednesday) FROM 6:00-7:00:
            This is a discussion on making our Morningside community stronger and safer!  The Morningside Initiative's Neighborhood Development committee invites residents and community members to continue the discussion on making our Morningside community better! 

THIS FRIDAY is a fun night out for Young Adults! 
             Come join us for just a fun night out on the town to end our week! We will be meeting at Ken's Bowling at 6:30 for a few rounds and then head to Friendly's for some ice cream.  After that, for those of you who like to stay out late, we'll head to the pool hall to shoot a few rounds!! Anyone is welcome!

What's been happening this week at the Berkshire Dream Center??

               This past Saturday we had Adopt A Block in Pittsfield, MA with 4 new people that just went through our last orientation! What a blessing they are to have on the team! Before we hit the streets, we prayed that new relationships would be formed with those on the new streets that we just adopted. Our visits were phenomenal with so many new doors opening and such great reception. It was a great day! Also, the Center was open from 10:00-12:00 and we had people stop by to grab some  food, clothing, coffee, and just to visit us.

On Sunday, our church service had its highest number yet with 21 people! Every week some of the faces change, but it was really nice seeing the people that we visited on Saturday with us on Sunday as well. 

Every week something incredible happens with the Berkshire Dream Center! What a way to live! When you trust your life in God's hands, your life rises to a whole new level. Sure, it's possible to live a life without Jesus by your side, because a lot of people do. But when you have Jesus leading and guiding you, you have hope that helps you look past your present pain, problems and circumstances.
 If you are questioning and doubting this, the question I have for you is, Have you ever gotten to know Jesus? If you have, you would know what I'm talking about. This is not a religion, this is a relationship.  Check out this video on youtube:Why I Hate Religion but Love Jesus . Let us know what you think! 

Thursday, January 19, 2012

Back to the Beginning.. How the Berkshire Dream Center started!

Glad you are interested to see all that is going on here at the Berkshire Dream Center! I thought before we get into the everyday miracles and stories that take place, I would take you on the journey of how the Berkshire Dream Center came into existence.

Four years ago, Katelynn Chapman and Cathy Chapman went to Los Angeles California to volunteer at the Dream Center. The Dream Center was founded by Pastor Matthew Barnett in 1994. It is a volunteer driven organization that has over 200 different types of outreaches. Currently it houses 600 people and serves over 400,000 people each month.  It is the "Church that Never Sleeps." 24 hours a day 7 days a week the Center is helping people all over Los Angeles. Their mission statement is, "Find a Need and Fill it, Find a Hurt a heal it."

During that trip, Katelynn started developing a heart that knows no limitations and to reach out to people wherever they are. As soon as they returned from Los Angeles, Cathy met with their pastor, Joseph Nieves, and shared the vision that God had given her on the trip to start one of their programs in Pittsfield called Adopt A Block. Pastor Joe encouraged Cathy to step out and do what God was asking. 

Adopt A Block then started in 2008, in the Morningside Community in Pittsfield, Massachusetts. The initial streets that were chosen were Cherry Street, Lincoln Street, and Second Street. During Adopt A Block, volunteers knock on every door of the streets that are chosen to get to know people, and then do trash clean up. The program is faith based, but when visits are done nothing is preached or shoved at people. It is simply letting them know that there is someone who cares about them and if they need anything or if someone they know needs anything then they are there. The first day that we stepped out and started our home visits, a landlord from one of these streets pulled up and got out of his truck and said, "Well,well. What the hell do we have here?" Later on, he went on to tell the newspaper that he knew that day we were either crazy or that we were for real and only time would tell. For 3 years, we visited the same houses twice a month to continue developing these relationships. 

Then on June 18th 2011, God honored the faithfulness and hearts of the volunteers who simply just wanted to make a difference in their community by reaching out to others with the love of God. On June 18th 2011, the Berkshire Dream Center found it's home. Katelynn and Cathy with their team of volunteers were doing home visits as usual, and saw the same landlord that they saw that first day. Katelynn felt like God was leading her to share her heart with him about doing something more for the community then just visiting the homes twice a month.It was then that Charlie Ostowsky took them across the street to 41 Cherry Street and said to them, "It's yours!" 

How many of us know that even when we pray and believe God for something, when it happens we are surprised? Even though we shouldn't be because we believe that God will do it! He said it was because of the change that he saw on his street that he would be honored to have us in his building. Matthew Barnett says in his book, "The Church that Never Sleeps," "that when caring people invade a neighborhood week after week with the love of God, the atmosphere of that community changes." When we start off with a vision that God has given us, we cannot get discouraged if we do not see results right away. All that God asks of us is that we are faithful to do our part, and He will do His and take care of the results. The landlord then fixed up the space, painted, installed cabinets for the food pantry, and got it ready for us in 1 week!

On July 1st 2011, the Berkshire Dream Center was open to anyone who wished to come through it's doors. We are now a 501(c)(3) and are recognized by the federal government as a public charity. We are a non profit organization that is fully dedicated to helping people in Berkshire County. Our streets have expanded and we now have adopted 8 in Pittsfield and 3 in North Adams, Massachusetts. Our team now consists of 27 volunteers and every month we hold orientations and training for more to come on our team! 

The Berkshire Dream Center's core values and beliefs are firmly grounded in the Bible. Our desire is to be like Jesus, and to love people the way that He does. The services that we provide are clothing, furniture, food, connection to assistance programs, Adopt  A Block ( home visits and street clean up), hospital visits, jail visits, our neighbors helping neighbors program, church on Sundays and a full kids program, a men's group, a young adults group, discussion groups, meeting any need that arises, and always FREE coffee!

This is how God brought us to the point that we are at today! Stories and updates will be shared every week so make sure that you keep visiting us here at this page! We also are on facebook and you can find us if you type in the search box, "Berkshire Dream Center".