Approximately 120 families in St. Mark benefited last week Saturday from a food hamper initiative of the St. George’s Baptist Church, valued at more than EC$10, 000.
According to Pastor of the St. George’s Baptist Church, Stanford Simon, the event formed part of the 40th anniversary of the Church, which will climax in November.
He said the initiative was made possible through collaboration between the church grouping and the Sunset City Food Festival Committee and donations made by members of the Baptist church, Roman Catholic Church, as well as grocery stories throughout the country.
Pastor Simon disclosed that the food hamper recipients were selected in conjunction with the Sunset committee.
“…What we did was ask the committee to identify families in their parish…and they gave us the names…and will (also) be joining us…to give these families the gifts…a food hamper with a bible, (along) with a card…”, he said.
The religious leader acknowledged that there are a lot of needy families in the country especially in these challenging economic times.
He expressed the hope that the initiative “will help people to see that we are not just a church about telling people that they need to get saved so that they can get to heaven…”.
“…We want them to understand that they have to be healthy and to have food on their table,” he said.
Pastor Simon noted that “it is very important for us (churches and communities) to work together to ensure that we succeed as a people and as a church,” adding “and so with that we have been sharing and giving to our community within the past years and today is just an extension of what we are doing and what we continue to do”.
He stated that this will not be a one-off distribution of items tO needy persons by the Church since it will be engaged in similar activities throughout the year.
“Several persons in St. George have already benefited… and I am thankful for the opportunity (to give to the needy families”, he said.
Head of Hospitality and the Anniversary Committee of the Baptist Church, Gail Blackette said, the food hamper initiative is just one activity out of a calendar of events being held to commemorate the significant milestone for the church, which was started 40 years ago through efforts of Leon Edwards, a prisoner who was on death row at Her Majesty’s Prison, Richmond Hill, St. George.
In giving the background to the formation of the church in Grenada, Pastor Simon recalled that it was through a radio programme sponsored by the Southern Baptist Convention that Edwards got into contact with the missionaries through letters.
He said that a group of missionaries were sent to visit Edwards at the Richmond Hill prison in August 1975 and to hold a Bible study at the prison and St. George’s then became the focal point for the beginning of Grenada Baptists.
Among the activities held so far to commemorate the 40th anniversary of the church were a health fair and extravaganza in May, a month of Prayer in June and now the food hamper initiative in July.
Blackette gave an insight into the upcoming activities and cited a
prayer walk for the month of August, a quiz and talent show in September and in October a prayer and breakfast function to be held at Camerhonge Park.
“We are inviting everyone to come and get a lot of local foods to eat,” she said.
According to Blackette, the “grand celebrations” would be held in November and includes a welcoming party to be held on the grounds of the Botanical Gardens on November 6, as well as a dinner and gala event on November 7, during which “a book about the history of the church” would be launched.
The Baptist Church will hold its regular service on Sunday, November 8 at which time the curtains will come down on the 40th anniversary celebrations.
The St. George’s Baptist Church is celebrating its 40th anniversary under the theme “Celebrating 40 years of empowering and serving people.”