Food Drive to Be Part of Service Project at Annual Conference

“Celebrating the Church of the Brethren’s 300th Anniversary in 2008″

(Feb. 7, 2008) — In an effort to “shower the Richmond community with loving acts of service,” a food drive is being planned in conjunction with the Service Blitz at the 2008 Annual Conference in Richmond, Va. The conference is a joint 300th Anniversary event of the Church of the Brethren and the Brethren Church.

The drive is sponsored by the 300th Anniversary Committee, to benefit the Central Virginia Food Bank. The scriptural theme for the project is from Matthew 25:35, “For I was hungry and you gave me something to eat.”

“Food banks experience a drastic increase in demand each summer,” explained the committee in an announcement. “During the school year, children in need are ensured one good meal a day through the free and reduced lunch program in their school. However, during the summer, families in need really struggle and many of these children would go hungry without the help of organizations that provide food to those in need.”

Founded in 1980, the Central Virginia Food Bank distributes almost 49,000 pounds of food each day to the most vulnerable people–children in need, the elderly, working poor families, disabled individuals, and others in crisis–through more than 500 organizations and agencies feeding the hungry in five cities and 31 counties in the region, according to the announcement. “That’s 12.6 million pounds of food a year!” the announcement said.

Conferencegoers are encouraged to bring a donation of healthy, non-perishable food. Particular needs include canned fish and meats, peanut butter, canned fruits and vegetables, hot and cold cereals, pasta, and rice. Donations will be collected in the registration lobby at the Richmond Convention Center. The goal is to collect three tons (6,000 pounds) of food in celebration of the 300th Anniversary. Congregations are invited to hold a food drive in advance of Annual Conference and send their donations with their delegates.

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The Church of the Brethren Newsline is produced by Cheryl Brumbaugh-Cayford, director of news services for the Church of the Brethren General Board. Newsline stories may be reprinted if Newsline is cited as the source. To receive Newsline by e-mail go to http://listserver.emountain.net/mailman/listinfo/newsline. Submit news to the editor at cobnews@brethren.org. For more Church of the Brethren news and features, subscribe to “Messenger” magazine; call 800-323-8039 ext. 247.