Dear Parishioners and Friends,
The disciples asked Jesus, "When did we see you hungry and not give you something to eat? Or when were you thirsty and we did not give you something to drink?" And Jesus said to them, "Whatever you do unto these, the least of your brothers and sisters, you do unto me."
While the primary objective of the Church is to worship Almighty God and to make new disciples, it cannot be denied that there is a strong social justice strain throughout the Gospels. In following the example of Jesus Christ, we are called to love as he loves us--a tall order to be sure, but one which ordinary people rise to every day, often unnoticed.
Yesterday Pete and I volunteered for the Sloatsburg Food Pantry's drive through distribution at the municipal building. Over the course of the day, nearly 360 families were supplied with nutritious provisions for the coming weeks. It felt good to do our part, but I also felt that it was important for the volunteers and the clients to see that the local clergy care about them. Since coming to Tuxedo, I have served on the pantry's board and helped with fundraising, but this was my first distribution. The experience opened my heart and eyes a bit wider to God's love. I will definitely be volunteering in the future, and I encourage you to consider doing the same.
No one knows what the next few months or even years will bring, but my guess is that there will be great need for some time to come. With new physical distancing guidelines it is clear that the Pantry cannot operate out of a church basement for much longer. A bigger space is needed with accommodation for distancing, parking, and handicap access, as well as a host of other needs. If you are aware of a suitable space in the Suffern/Sloatsburg/Tuxedo area, please let me know, and I will pass it on to the board.
God's work is being done here, and it is marvelous in our eyes.