For others of you, it looks like strangers sitting around a table.
To me, it looks like the world changing.
This is our Hunger Outreach team meeting. They are an amazing group of people who are doing some unsung, yet major work in our community. According to the group, they have done the following.
- Summer 2016; became pilot depot for distributing Feeding Medina County Weekender Bags to Garfield School SNAP (Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program) recipients
- Summer 2017; expanded Feeding Medina County Weekender Bags depot operation to serve all Medina schools. Other churches and organizations followed our lead also becoming Weekender Bags depots.
- Supplemented the foods of six Garfield School’s most needy families since the summer of 2016. A seventh family was added for this year.
- Beginning our second year cooking for Cups Café a monthly free lunch for about 60 diners. Church youth are participating in this project at least three times over the year.
- Donating to the Seventh Day Adventists Community Services Center with the Buy One Give One project providing non-food necessities. We also gave around 30 turkeys during the holidays. We supplied CSC with shoes, socks, under wear and school supplies for this fall’s Back-To-School distribution.
- Our congregation collected $2,000 for Feeding Medina County with the Coin Jar project.
- Community Hunger Outreach Ministry is now beginning a new project providing nutritious snacks for children who spend time at the Medina Library after school and on Saturdays.
All of these happened once our church learned that over 19,000 people were food insecure in Medina County. When we learned that this included children: 1 in 4 kids are food insecure. When we figured out the math of this constitutes at least 11% of our time, we could have prayed for it. Yet we prayed, and we acted. To quote Pope Francis, “You pray and then you do. That’s how prayer works.”
This is how the world changes. It’s not really exciting all the time. It’s not sexy. It doesn’t make the headlines. Yet it is the commitment through the detail, the set up, the organization, the sustained discipline of showing up that changes the world.
So how can you get involved? Give of your time, talent, and treasure.
Time: We have plenty of opportunity for you to show up and help pack bags for food. To help deliver food. To check in families and spend some time. To volunteer at CUPS.
Talent: If you can organize, have a vision, can network with others, can inspire others to give of their time and treasure, we could use you.
Treasure: While we cannot serve both God and money, we’re looking for money that will serve God. Prayer doesn’t buy food at the grocery stores. Money does. We could use your help.
Comment below or get a hold of me with any ideas, volunteer your time, or where to donate your funds. As Jane Greinke wrote to me, “The success of all these projects depends upon many of us each doing a little, together accomplishing wonders.”