Erie County church helping to feed children
Feb 16, 2013 (Erie Times-News - McClatchy-Tribune Information Services via COMTEX) --
About 125 people will work the macaroni and cheese assembly line Sunday at Church of the Cross.
Instead of holding its 10:30 a.m. worship, the Presbyterian congregation will package 20,000 kids' meals to give to the Second Harvest Food Bank of Northwest Pennsylvania to distribute to hungry children in the area.
"There's needs here in our own backyard and we don't want to ignore those," the Rev. Jim Moelk said.
He said his congregation at 5901 Millfair Road in Millcreek Township believes strongly in serving others and cares especially about children.
Moelk also said that Pennsylvania and Erie County have high rates of children living in poverty and with hunger. That's something that people with full bellies can easily become immune to, he said. Church members wanted to remember and assist those less fortunate.
"It's going to be a great help because they're going to be providing 20,000 meals," said Sister Karen Kosin, product resources manager at the food bank. "That's a huge amount."
She said the meals can be distributed through the 298 agencies in 11 counties served by Second Harvest Food Bank of Northwest Pennsylvania. Those agencies include food pantries, soup kitchens and shelters.
Church of the Cross will be working with the nonprofit Outreach Inc. on the Kids Care Meals of Hope project, Moelk said.
The meals are enriched with soy protein, vitamins and nutrients to be extra good for the recipients, he said.
Volunteers will work on an assembly line to measure, package and seal the dry ingredients.
"We have whole families that have signed up," Moelk said.
He said volunteers aren't needed but people can send monetary donations to the church to help defray the cost.
"It costs 25 cents a meal," Moelk said.
He said the congregation took $5,000 from its mission budget to pay for the project.
The packaging will begin Sunday after the church's 9 a.m. service. A 10:30 a.m. service isn't being held this weekend, but Moelk said members won't miss out if they help with the project.
"It is a form of worship," he said.
DANA MASSING can be reached at 870-1729 or by e-mail. Follow her on Twitter at twitter.com/ETNmassing.
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