St. Albans Episcopal Church
Food Boxes for Hungry Families
Did you read last Wednesday’s (11/21) Wickenburg Sun? If so, you may have read the Letter to the Editor from Edward Kientz, CEO at local company Benner-Nawman, Inc. Mr. Kientz described a ministry that his company, along with several other entities has been doing for the past few years. He describes a situation that plagues many local families when the schools break for Christmas and children who regularly receive free or reduced-price breakfast and lunch are home for 2 weeks without this benefit. The children that are affected often do not have dinner at home, their only meals for the day are those that they receive at school. It may surprise you to learn that more than 70% of our student population qualifies for free or reduced Breakfast and Lunch. Mr. Kientz and his church (Crist Church of the Valley) stepped up to do something about this problem and over the years, local churches and individuals have joined in the effort to provide much needed food to these families. This year, Benner-Nawman has pledged $7,000 toward this effort. They are seeking help from individuals, businesses, and churches to make sure that no child goes hungry over the Christmas school break.
My prayer is that you will join me in providing additional food boxes for hungry children. The folks at Benner-Nawman have been doing this for a while and they have their process down. They know what they are doing! This is the BEST type of ministry! They have the experience needed to make a big difference. We don’t need to “reinvent the wheel”, only follow their leadership. The Benner-Nawman employees along with others will graciously accept the assistance of the generous folks at St. Alban’s Episcopal Church!
So, how do we do this? I have a list of foods that are requested to be in the boxes. Once again, they have been doing this for a while and they know exactly what foods will help bridge the gap over the holidays. I will have copies of the list of foods requested at church every Sunday. You are requested to purchase only those items. The cost per box is estimated to be approximately $50.00. I will purchase (with my frugal eyes) the contents for a box and will have it available as an example for you in the Parish Hall. You may choose to shop for the items, assemble them in a box (provided by Benner-Nawman). Or, you may choose to give a monetary donation, filtered through St. Alban’s for tax purposes, and I or we (volunteers) will shop and assemble the boxes. In addition, the good folks at Benner-Nawman will assemble boxes on December 18 for delivery to the schools on December 19. You would be welcome to go to their location and help assemble and/or deliver.
I would love to have St. Alban’s make a “GOAL” of how many boxes we will fill. Should I “challenge” you? Do you want to challenge US? Let me know your thoughts. Regardless of what we decide, I know that YOU will respond generously! Thank you.
Homeless Comfort Bags
Okay, so do Y’all get the idea that I like to feed people? Well, yes, I do. Some of you know my history and that history includes a time of need. There were days that I had little to nothing to feed my two daughters. I relied heavily on food stamps, church food boxes, and free school meals. I know how it is to not be able to provide food for my children, much less myself. I think that I am not the only one who looks at a homeless person and says “there but for the grace of God go I.” The homeless comfort bags that we have been providing to Wickenburg Community Hospital Emergency Room, Wickenburg Police Department, Wickenburg Fire Department, Wickenburg CAP Food Bank, and St. Alban’s Episcopal Church have been met with thanks, delight, and humility.
Recently a young woman stopped by St. Alban’s at the end of our church service. She arrived early enough to receive Holy Communion. She was very obviously comfortable in church. After church she came to Coffee Hour and in the end, we were able to provide 2 Comfort Kits. One for her and one for her “husband”. This couple was on their way to Quartzite, walking, hoping for work.
As I mentioned in my article about Food Boxes for Hungry Families, I will provide a “sample” Homeless Hunger Bag in the Parish Hall along with a list with what to include in them. I like the idea of including only certain items. My goal will be to provide 1 – 2 days of food along with a couple of comfort items.
So, to clarify, I will have two different ministry “showcases” available for you on Sundays. You are such a generous Parish! I thank you in advance for all that you are able to do to help the needy and hungry among us!
Yes, I’m asking MORE:
Sometimes “Ministry” involves doing for others, those outside our Parish Family who are in need. However, we also have Ministries right here in our midst. Those ministries include being Ushers, Lectors, Chalice Servers, Acolytes, Altar Guild Members, Coffee Hour Hosts, providing Flowers for our Altar, and singing in our Choir. It “takes a village” to run a church. If you are interested in serving in any of these capacities, please see me! I will direct you to the person who can help you get started.
If you are interested in helping with Usher, Acolyte, Chalice Server, or Lector, we will have an important training on Saturday, December 8 at 8:00 AM. We will begin with Ushers, then proceed to Acolytes, Chalice Servers, and Lectors. I would request that all CURRENT servers in any of the ministries along with all those who would like to join us attend. We will be finished by 10:00.
If you are interested in being a member of Altar Guild, please contact Jan Heineman. If you would like to give flowers, please sign up in the Parish Hall. And, if you love to sing, please let Janelle Downing know if you would like to join our Chancel Choir.
Thank you for your prayerful consideration of helping our St. Alban’s “Village” make sure that all of the needs of this amazing Parish are met.