Grace Hunger Committee Food Pantry Collections
By Elaine Dugan
“We equip the people of God to feed the hungry…” has been part of the Hunger Committee’s mission statement for many years. In the 1980’s Grace joined with Community and Wesley United Methodist Churches to collect and distribute food to three food pantries: Common Pantry at 3744 North Damen Avenue in Chicago, Aurora Interfaith Food Pantry, now at 1110 Jericho Road in Aurora, and Loaves and Fishes, now located at 1871 High Grove Lane in Naperville. In the 1990’s, each church decided to individually support different pantries, but Grace continued to support the same three pantries ever since, on a rotating monthly basis.
Grocery bags, donated by Trader Joe’s, are distributed at the end of each month with a list of critically needed food items. Members are encouraged to fill the bag and return it to the Food Collection bin inside the Narthex entryway on the first Sunday of the month. Monetary donations to the Love Loaf, located by the Welcome Desk, or through offering envelopes are greatly appreciated because this allows each pantry to buy needed food items from the Northern Illinois Food Bank or the Greater Chicago Food Depository at discount prices. For each $1 donation, pantries can purchase $7-$10 worth of food! On average, over the last 15 months, Grace members donated 450 pounds of food, or 50 bags, and $351 in cash donations each month.
Thanks for your continued support and generous donations to these pantries. Loaves and Fishes also appreciates donations of empty egg cartons, which we will collect, but we do NOT collect plastic bags or Styrofoam products.