St. Stephen UMC Donates $20,000 to Loaves & Fishes
Meanwhile, Tina Postel, Executive Director of Loaves and Fishes, Charlotte’s food pantry, and her team had to re-imagine how to feed people. Brick and mortar store-style pantries were potentially dangerous to the hungry and to volunteers, and were shuttered. In response, Loaves and Fishes went mobile. At 20 different locations in Mecklenburg County, the food pantry staff set up drive-thru style, contact-less distribution sites with refrigerated trucks, small teams of socially-distanced volunteers and pre-packaged family-sized grocery boxes for community members who came through the line. It was a big undertaking that took some investment and change.
St. Stephen members, mostly sidelined at home, focused their mission to help in the most effective way possible in the pandemic, with a $20,000 donation to help Loaves and Fishes keep their efforts going. The check, a 10-percent tithe from a project to refresh the Sardis Road church launched in January, was presented to Postel at one of the mobile distribution sites on Tuesday.
“We know you can leverage this money to buy more food than we ever could at the grocery store,” Senior Pastor Ken Curtis said. “This is the way we can help our neighbors right now.”
Since December, St. Stephen has donated more than $40,000 to area non-profit organizations. In January, St. Stephen helped fund a Greater Matthews Habitat for Humanity House with a similar $20,000 donation. The family that was chosen for that house recently took possession of the finished property.
“Our mission, even in a pandemic, is to take care of our neighbors. To feed the hungry, to give shelter to those that need it,” Curtis said. “We’re doing that with our hands and feet when we can, safely. When we can’t we show our love and support in financial ways. St. Stephen members are generous people. We have to be. It’s our calling here on earth.”
Resources for Vital Congregations
GBHEM Leadership Resources
A Disciple’s Path; A Guide for United Methodist
RESOURCES TO CONNECT WITH THE COMMUNITY:
The Appalachian District Church Vitality Team has been prayerfully seeking ways to help support you and the ministries of your local congregation during this COVID-19 pandemic. Together they have diligently researched and connected with others throughout the conference and our denomination to identify resources and offer them to you. We hope they will be helpful to you and bless you greatly in leading your churches and communities through this unprecedented time. We are very grateful to the District Vitality Team and other contributors for their great work on this resource.
This faithful team has created three documents, two of which you are receiving today. They include:
- Family Home Worship – designed to help families establish a regular worship space within their homes as well as a time where they can worship together.
- Tech Strategies – to help guide you in selecting effective tools and resources within your budget to best communicate in the digital world.
We believe these resources will be of great benefit to you. Also know that the District Vitality Team is available to answer any questions you might have in regards to the documents attached. If you have questions, you may email Rev. Howard Fleming at email@example.com.