We are a church that follows in the footsteps of the early disciples. We are a people who have journeyed into the unfamiliar lands, not always sure where we would end up, motivated by our desire to share the Good News.
In 1989, we found ourselves at the edge of the unknown. During that year, members of the church had been hearing stories of people in the area that were hungry. Many phone calls were made, but to no avail. The response from local social service departments was always the same, “There is no poverty here”.
“What could we do?” They wondered.
On a cold winter day, Pastor Erica led a “vision” day. The participants began to dream about the possibility of a soup kitchen.
The members decided to serve one meal as an experiment. On March 25, 1989 – the day before Easter — our fellowship hall was opened for dinner. Volunteers prepared hot food for folks to eat. Visitors were welcomed.
A woman walked in and handed a $50 gift certificate for a local grocery store and began to leave. The volunteers called out after her, “We don’t know if this will really work … we don’t know if anyone will really come.”
The woman responded, “Oh ye of little faith.”
The first night that they opened eleven people came and touched the hearts of this church. After a second trial run, it was decided that we would serve meals every week.
Today, the soup kitchen has grown into a non-profit comprised of eight soup kitchens and four food pantries in an eleven town area. From the small, shaky beginning, a much-needed community ministry was created.
We are a church who rises to the challenge even in the most improbable places. In 2001, after the world trade center towers were destroyed, we were heart broken.
We thought, what could we do? And so we rose to the challenge by gathering volunteers, packing a van and showing up near ground zero ready to clear debris.
In 2010, we created the missional church committee so that we could again listen to and meet the needs of our community. We met with a town selectmen and determined that hunger was still a problem.
We wondered, what could be done?
Hungry families were lacking in healthy proteins, so we began soliciting and donating frozen meats to the local food pantries so that families could have a more complete diet.
Today, our faith continues to challenges us to look around in our lives and in our community and hear the cries of the world. Our faith invites us to look in the most improbable places and discern the ways that even there — especially there — we are called to share God’s love.