FUMC’s Faith House holds food distribution day in Hartselle
Sue Groover has been involved with the Faith House ministry at Hartselle’s First United Methodist Church for a number of years. The 81-year-old said she cannot remember exactly how long it’s been, but her life has been blessed by the ministry and all the people she’s been able to meet through its efforts.
The ministry, just one of many through FUMC’s Good Samaritan program, has been going strong for more than 20 years.
Nearly 80 families in Hartselle were the recipients of the work that goes into Faith House Nov. 21 when the ministry held its annual Give Thanks food bag distribution. This year, the distribution was a drive-by event.
Groover said families received everything needed to make a Thanksgiving meal, along with pantry staples such as flour, sugar and various canned items. Some larger families were given turkeys as a part of the Give Thanks distribution.
The food is donated by church members, Groover said, adding church members from FUMC, First Christian and Christ Our Redeemer Lutheran Church have gone above and beyond to support the Good Samaritan ministry throughout the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic.
“I just can’t say enough about the people at our church; they have been very generous during this time,” she said. “They’ve given and given and given.”
“After they fill those bags, then we fill the remainder with potatoes, rolls, fruit, cabbage, carrots and chicken,” Groover said. “We had one family that has nine children and multiple grandchildren, so naturally that family got a turkey.”
Kathie Beach, with Christ Our Redeemer, is heavily involved in the Give Thanks food donation and a friend of Groover’s. “She’s my right hand in this,” Groover said. “We also have the workers who come and help us on distribution day.”
Simultaneously, families were able to visit Hope House for a little Christmas joy.
Tresa McGhee runs Hope House, and she said the event was well attended.
“We had a great turnout,” McGhee said. “(We) gave away all 20 of the Christmas trees we had, and lots of folks got decorations, including wreaths, garland, lights and other decor. We have been doing this for the past four years, and it gets bigger every year.”
Faith House and Hope House are both self-sufficient through individual donations and do not rely on the church for support. The ministries also offer job training and job search help as well as utility and medical assistance.