by Rev. Dana O’Brien
A representative from TEFAP has now inspected the FaithWorks food pantry. We expect to hear early this week whether we have been approved. (We hope to be approved, but apparently with the addition of the recently approved Salvation Army pantry, there are a lot of pantries in the immediate area.)
While we hope to be approved, we will proceed with getting everything ready and planning for an opening early to mid February. When we open, our hours will be:
- Tuesday, 1:00 to 3:00 p.m.
- Thursday, 6:00 to 8:00 p.m.
Here are a couple of things coming up over the next couple of weeks:
Planning Meeting — Thursday, January 29 at 7:00 p.m. Again, how would Jesus operate a food pantry? This is our missional question. Anyone interested in applying Jesus’ teachings to our FaithWorks food pantry is invited to a planning meeting on Thursday, January 29 at 7:00 pm at Atonement. We’ll continue where we left off last time and talk about volunteers and hospitality and other stuff that relates to our upcoming opening. (And feel free to bring others who may feel called to this ministry.)
Souper Bowl Collection on Sunday February 1 at our FaithWorks congregations. To help kick off the opening of the food pantry, we will collect food and money at worship services during the weekend of February 1. (Many of our congregations have historically had a Souper Bowl food collection that day. This year our efforts will focus on the needs of our FaithWorks Food Pantry.)
Work Day on Tuesday, February 3 from 3:00 to 7:00 p.m. We’ve got our current food supply already on shelves in the storage room, but we’ll need help setting up the pantry “shopping” area, cleaning and setting up the hospitality area, sorting and putting away food from the Super Bowl collection, and getting done all the other things needed for the pantry to open.
Volunteer Orientations on Tuesday, February 3 at 3:00 p.m. and 7:00 p.m. Since we’re having a work day that day, it makes sense to also provide two short volunteer orientations on that day. We’ll do one at 3:00 p.m. and then again at 7:00 p.m. We hope all of our volunteers can make one of the orientations.
Volunteer Sign-Ups. We’ve got volunteer sign-up sheets out at Atonement – Our Savior’s. Joyce has sent out an email to people who formerly volunteered at the pantry when it was at Our Savior’s, and I’ll be sending a mass email out to lots of Atonement-Our Savior’s people. But we can use all the volunteers we can get, so if you or anyone you know would like to volunteer, please shoot me an email with your name, phone number, the day you want to volunteer, and how many times per month you’d like to volunteer.
Food Collections. This pantry is also a wonderful opportunity to partner with businesses, schools and various organizations to collect food. If you are a part of an organization or have an employer who might be interested in partnering with us in a food collection (or a work day or other volunteering opportunity) please contact me. We’d love to involve as many people as possible.
We are really excited about using this pantry as an opportunity to apply Jesus’ teachings in a real life setting. To live out Kingdom of God principles in a tangible way. Thanks to all of you for being a part of this!