From the Pastor
The Corner Market, a small market with produce and handmade goods, is open every Saturday at the corner of Elam Ave. and Walker, not far from the church. There are a couple of local farmers selling everything from eggs to kale to homemade jam, as well as handmade goodies of all sorts. The market buzzes with life on Saturday mornings as neighbors shop and greet each other.
The Market has a program called Green for Greens, in which the market doubles the dollars of folks who have SNAP/EBT benefits (that’s a food assistance program for people facing food insecurity; it used to be called food stamps). So, for example, if someone has $10 in SNAP dollars, they can spend $20 at the market, making their purchasing power go farther, enabling them to buy more fresh, healthy produce, and supporting local farmers. It’s a good thing all around.
When I heard about this program at the market, I thought, this has First Christian written all over it. One of our particular passions is feeding hungry people—I don’t mean at coffee hour after church; I’m thinking more about our support of Greensboro Urban Ministry and the One Step Further Food Pantry, and the Cone Elementary School backpack food program. We take seriously Jesus’ invitation to love our neighbors, and we know that sometimes, the best way to do that is by feeding them. We’ve also been interested in the connections between faith and health—over the years, our Health and Wholeness initiative has inspired us to go for walks, eat more veggies, and pay attention to our bodies as the gift from God that they are.
What could be better than to combine all this into one project? Feeding hungry people, healthy food, right in our own neighborhood. I gathered some of our Health and Wholeness folks together to talk about this, and we’re going to do two things:
First, we’re going to have a table set up at the market on Saturday, November 18. We’ll sell handmade or home-baked goods, and all the proceeds will go to the Green for Greens project. We’ll need donations of things to sell, and a few helping hands that day to set up and staff the table. If you’d like to help, let me know.
Second, we’re thinking about hosting a community conversation next winter or spring, in which we invite a local expert to help us learn more about the complexities of hunger and food insecurity in Guilford County. We’re very much in the early planning stages of that event; maybe you’d like to help us get organized?
This is just one of the many ways First Christian is making a big impact on our community. This newsletter is chock full of other opportunities. It sure is good to be the church together.
P.S. Speaking of markets, I hope you’ll stop by our Marketplace at the church on Nov. 4! Our women’s group puts on this event as a fundraiser for their mission projects. You won’t want to miss it.
One more thing: Rob and I love this church and are beyond grateful to be raising our kids in this community. We turned our pledge card in last week. Will you join us in making a promise to support First Christian in 2018? If you haven’t already, you can get a pledge card on our website or at the church. Thank you.