McMinnville Members Open Pantries, Pocketbooks

January 20, 2014 | Michelle McMillen

McMinnville Church members opened their pantries and pocketbooks for the 15th year in a row to feed the less fortunate in their community through a special service held the Sabbath before Thanksgiving.

During the annual service, food donations are deposited in the foyer until the beginning of the church service, when the children of the congregation move it to the front of the sanctuary. After a simple potluck lunch of soup and sandwiches, the congregation gathers in the sanctuary once again to sort the donations and fill decorated boxes for those in need.

Names of families in need are provided by church members and local community agencies. The number of families assisted each year varies, but, like the loaves and fishes Jesus blessed, there is always enough.

This year there were some special guests. One of the recipient families accepted an invitation to attend the Thanksgiving service. The mother had mentioned that her four children really needed shoes, so Jerry Joubert, McMinnville Church pastor, presented those as part of the service. The family stayed for lunch and happily participated in sorting and distributing the Thanksgiving boxes, gaining a double blessing of receiving and giving.