Address

: Burlington Center Mall, lower level outside Sears, 2501 Burlington-Mount Holly Rd., Burlington

Affiliation

: Christian multidenominational.

Mission

: Followers of Jesus Christ have joined to be a visible presence in the marketplace, offering listening, care, prayer and programs. Our goal is to build relationships with individuals and, as God leads, point them to Jesus Christ and a local church.

Staff

: Elsie Nicolette, executive director; Kara Edwards, executive assistant

Brief history

: BCMM began in 1998 as a mission outreach of the First Presbyterian Church of Mount Holly and became an independent organization in 2006. Believing that teamwork among Christians will strengthen outreach into the community, BCMM unites believers of varying racial, ethnic and denominational backgrounds from 39 churches as volunteers and partners.

Our volunteers receive training and experience in listening to visitors, praying with them, and helping seekers take new steps along their journey of faith. We work to provide a welcoming place where people can make friends and find out more about living in relationship with Jesus Christ. By God's grace, and with the support of many individuals and congregations, BCMM yesterday celebrated 10 years of ministry in the mall.

What makes you proud of your organization?

During 69 hours each week, we are available to listen and care for people. If desired, visitors can receive individual prayer and referrals to area resources.

Wonderful volunteers with diverse ethnicities and a shared faith get to know each other by working together.

Window displays are eye-catching and thought-provoking.

Our "Prayer Zone" provides a place of calm for those who are stressed.

We offer grief support, health screenings, "The Lounge" for teens, basic computer training, Bible study, Overeaters Anonymous, fellowship for the deaf, knitting classes, special seasonal programs and more.

People want to reproduce what we are doing here - one former volunteer is working to start a mall ministry in North Carolina.

You can play table tennis, foosball or checkers at the Mall Ministry between programs.

We depend upon prayer to unleash God's power; more than 270 people receive our biweekly prayer sheet.

What is your role in the community?

We are a spiritual emergency room. We are a safe place for the lonely, bored, curious or grieving to come and visit, talk, or just pause and reflect.

We are a training ground to help Christians learn how to care sensitively for others and share the love of Christ.

We connect people to area social services and churches.

We are neutral territory where different churches can dialogue and work together. Burlington County Concerned Citizens for Sheltering the Homeless Inc., is one of several multi-church groups that meet here.

We serve mall visitors through coat check and gift wrapping.

For specialized services we partner with other nonprofit groups, including the Red Cross, Moorestown Visiting Nurses, Directors of Volunteers in Association, and the Burlington County Health Department.

Schedule

: Monday-Saturday 10 a.m. to 9:30 p.m. Because we encourage people to attend church, we are closed on Sundays.

Phone

: 609-239-9300.

On the Web

:

.

E-mail

:

- Submitted by

Barbara Thompson,

board president

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Cynthia Henry

Neighbors editor