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Denver Church Acts Locally, Thinks Globally


First Christian Reformed Church in Denver, Colo., made a global impact with a local bazaar that featured products from all over the world.

More than $15,000 was raised by 29 vendors at the church’s third annual Global Bazaar held in December.

“This provides us with more than just our Global Bazaar. We’re making friends with the people in Denver, building our community with others who are doing good,” said Rev. Joy Engelsman, minister of church development at First CRC.

“I love the integration that is in this building. We have items that are distinctly African, distinctly Peruvian, distinctly Denver. We’ve layered them all together and mixed our lives with theirs,” she said.

Jennie Nichols, founder of Venture Imports, was one of the vendors. “It's really cool to be a part of a group that truly cares and is doing something about the many problems in the world,” she said.

A variety of products were sold, including jewelry made by a group of ex-prostitutes in Nepal, fabrics made by Nigerian women affected by or infected with HIV or AIDS, or, more locally, soup mixes put together by women in a Denver home for women who are abused.

Food sold by church members also raised money for the church’s missionary in Tanzania.

One of the organizers, Sandie Posthumus, noted that the church doesn’t charge a booth fee. “All we ask is that the vendors give ten percent back to another ministry. Basically we say ‘please come and let’s do this good work together.’”

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