For some years now, our Immanuel Lutheran Church and School family has provided Thanksgiving food boxes to families in need in our community. We do this by working with a number of our partners in ministry who are also connected to the community and serve people in the greater Memphis area in a variety of ways. What we want you to know is that providing Thanksgiving food boxes is much more than food going to a “good cause”. It helps make important connections as part of the ministry that takes place. Our partners, such as the Memphis Union Mission, HopeWorks, Neighborhood Christian Centers, and RestoreCorps, are already working to meet specific needs in the community and have established on-going relationships with the people they serve in Jesus’ name. However, they also rely heavily on people like us to support them in what they do in sharing the love of Christ and help them with what they cannot do alone, such as providing food to many families in need at Thanksgiving.
There are often heartfelt stories of mercy and compassion revealed in conjunction with distributing our Thanksgiving food boxes. Stories you never hear. This year, the director of the Memphis Union Mission Opportunity Center shared that a city code enforcement worker called him to say that a family in a nearby neighborhood was about to be evicted and they had nothing. Nothing in this case actually meant nothing. The city worker asked if there was any way some food could be provided to them. The director mentioned he was able to say “yes” because Thanksgiving food boxes were being delivered to the Opportunity Center by Immanuel. Last year, Neighborhood Christian Centers referred to Immanuel as their “answered prayer” when we showed up with a significant number of Thanksgiving food boxes after they had just distributed their last Thanksgiving meal. Thank you for showing your neighbor the love of Jesus by sharing your blessings with those in need!