2016-04-13 / Front Page

Agape Food Bank on April 23 this month

by Debra Jones

It takes a lot of help from volunteers and the trusties to make the Food Bank happen. It takes a lot of help from volunteers and the trusties to make the Food Bank happen. Due to the Mayhaw Festival next weekend, the Agape Food Bank at Colquitt United Methodist Church will be held on April 23, the fourth Saturday in April, instead of its usual third Saturday. The distribution begins at 10:00 a.m., following a welcoming devotional by the church pastor, Rev. Rebecca Duke-Barton, at 9:30 a.m. in the church sanctuary.

Along with an inspiring message, Food Bank participants receive a great set of groceries each month and information about other services available to them.

Last month Mrs. Darlene Cox, director of the Miller County Health Department, highlighted several of the programs offered at this facility including WIC, immunizations, sight and hearing screening for school-age children, blood pressure checks, women’s health services, and many, many more. Following her presentation, Ms. Cox was available for questions. This month a representative from the Department of Labor will be on hand.

Each month it takes a big group of volunteers and trusties from the Miller County Jail to make the food bank happen. Ten to 12 work at the church on distribution day to sign up participants and direct traffic while another 20 plus are at the Food Bank site, where the groceries are loaded into vehicles by the trusties. Mrs. Estelle Thompson and Debra Wolfe supervise the operation, and other volunteers pick up and pack frozen foods and fresh produce earlier in the morning. Jeff Small and his assistant deliver to shut-ins who have no transportation.

The Food Bank actually begins the day before with the unloading of a semi from Second Harvest and the packing of 400 bags of groceries. Volunteers range in age from teens to octogenarians! All who serve leave with a sense of satisfaction and accomplishment. One such volunteer, high school student Haley Chandler, captured this feeling in her recent “Why I Love CUMC” article published in the church’s monthly newsletter, “The Messenger.”

She writes, “Two of my favorite things about this church are the trusties ministry and the Food Bank ministry. In my opinion I think we have one of the most caring and loving churches. CUMC opens its arms to anyone who needs anything. This church is filled with people who love the Lord and want to show His love to people through whichever ministry they may be involved in.

“I love that our church welcomes trusties to come, and it gives them a chance to receive the Word of God. The trusties help fill our church, and I love coming to church every Sunday to see their family sitting right beside them. They are also a big part of the Food Bank. They help pack the food and distribute it out to the families that need it with a kind heart. If you ever have a chance to work at the Food Bank, please do it. You will receive so many blessings from the people that come through and talk to you. I had a chance to help out a few weeks ago, and I enjoyed it. I love CUMC because of the people and the ministries within it.”

All volunteers are welcome and are not limited to Colquitt United Methodist Church. Others in the community who participate are greatly appreciated. Also all who contribute to the Agape Thrift Store on the square in Colquitt are indirect volunteers. Their donations, which are tax deductible, become the store merchandise, and the sales from the store fund the Food Bank. So those dropping off items are performing a huge service as are those who shop at the Agape Store. Donations and purchases keep the Agape Food Bank in operation; it is not included in the church’s budget each year. So please continue to support the store; it is filled with unbelievable quality merchandise at affordable prices. Also monetary contributions to the food bank are always welcome. These may be mailed to CUMC, P.O. Box 155, Colquitt, GA 39837.

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