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Local church gives more than food during holiday

Posted: December 2, 2013 - 5:01pm

For the third year, Immanuel Baptist Church gave away over 100 free Thanksgiving meals last week in preparation for the holiday season. Not only did they provide turkey, dressing, mashed potatoes, gravy, green beans, rolls/butter and home-made cupcakes; but they reached beyond their church walls and delivered meals to shut-ins, elderly and disabled. Chief cook Reid Rust did most of the cooking and was not present that evening because he was out delivering close to 70 meals.

Miss Ann’s Kitchen of Springhill generously provided all the corn-bread stuffing and gravy. Pastor Tony Crocker said, “She has been one of our best supporters and we owe her gratitude.” Many kitchen helpers were serving while a band of the youth from the church contributed guitar and vocal background music.

Pastor Crocker drove the van to University of Central Arkansas to pick up about fifteen foreign exchange students who enjoyed sharing the English language with other dinner guests. Many were from West Africa and showed appreciation for our holiday custom.

Greenbrier First United Methodist Church (GFUMC) offers a benefit in this community with their food pantry. If you need help with groceries, just knock on their office door between 9 and 2 p.m. Monday through Friday. Claire Welch has helped keep track of needed food to keep the pantry going — which sometimes means long hours of shopping for the best buys, counting what is available and what is needed at any given time and shopping to fill in what is not donated. GFUMC is blessed to have Centerville Methodist Church as a partner in the Food Pantry ministry. They are a small country church near Woolly Hollow and recently dropped off two huge boxes of food.

Twenty-one families received food assistance from GFUMC in November including items to make a Thanksgiving meal. This year 206 families have been helped—up from 178 last year at this time. In spite of help from the Discovery Club, the Trunk-n-Treat food drive and Centerville Methodist Church, the shelves are getting bare again.

The most needed items right now are peanut butter, pancake/baking mix, spaghetti sauce, cold cereal, instant potatoes, bottled juice (non-perishable), chili with beans, baked beans, and Spam.  The freezer is almost empty of meat such as one pound hamburger rolls, hot dogs, small chickens/pieces and other small packages of meats.  Clients especially appreciate the hamburger to go with Hamburger Helper. Christmas meal goodies are welcome. Large paper grocery sacks are always needed. Just bring donations to the office door. GFUMC is located at the corner of Tyler Street and Highway 65.

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