Let me tell you about something that happened last month.
As we roll out this food and faith blog, you will get to know Marci and Daniel. They are important partners in a monthly food ministry we started in December 2018 at Norwood United Methodist Church in Knoxville, Tennessee. We call it “Second Sunday Dinner Party.”
We started our Dinner Party by inviting young adults and others who don’t attend church. But we also invite pastors who we hope will become friends with our guests. One of those pastors is Teresa Atkins McClure. She’s from New Life United Methodist Church, which offers a “Dinner Church” every Tuesday night to about 35 children and their parents at East Knox Elementary School. (Read our story about New Life’s “Dinner Church.”)
It’s a little embarrassing, but Marci, Daniel and I always make too much food. We’re always expecting a huge crowd and we like to send home leftovers. But we still have too much.
Teresa has a small congregation, and they’re doing an amazing job keeping their Dinner Church ministry going. So we’ve started sending our leftovers home with Teresa to feed the kids on Tuesday night.
In May, we learned that New Life was going to host a “Camp in the Community” week for the children on the last week of June. Teresa’s mighty band of volunteers were already going to have to provide breakfast and lunch for their guests Monday through Friday.
So we put our heads together with Teresa, and we were thrilled when we figured out it would be helpful for Marci, Daniel and me to cook the regular Tuesday-night meal for “Dinner Church” at the elementary school.
If you know anything about United Methodists, you know we love a good connectional story. So here you go. Marci’s church membership is at Fountain City UMC. Mine is at Ebenezer UMC. We used the kitchen at Norwood UMC, and we have our ministry there. My husband Mike was there to help us transport and serve, and his membership is at First-Centenary UMC. We met up with the folks at New Life UMC to feed the little kids and the staff from Camp in the Community, which is one of our proudest ministries in Holston Conference.
Oh! And what did we serve? Cheesy Baked Ziti with Spinach. Marci’s Meatballs. Green Salad/ Carrots. Sliced Watermelon. Bread. Cookies. Iced Tea and Lemonade.
We had a divine time!