I look forward to the day when pouring an ice bucket over your head or engaging in tacky tournaments like a three-legged, blindfolded nun sack race or inviting children to see the skeleton of a former pastor in the church bell tower are not necessary in exchange for a donation to feed hungry people.
I look forward to the day when people realize that churches with soup kitchens are not feeding their poor ~ but are feeding our poor ~ because the poor are as much a part of our community as are the wealthy. I look forward to the day when people no longer assume that those in need of a hot meal are necessarily homeless, addicted and/or mentally ill. I look forward to the day when we realize that we can live without a haircut or new shoes, but we cannot live without food, and there is no limit to what people, including me, will do or endure to feed themselves and their families. I look forward to the day when I don’t have to tell you what a bummer it is to be hungry during the holidays.
I look forward to the day when every arts organization, street festival, publicly-funded theater and other public and private organizations and institutions include and promote benevolence in their programs and activities. People rarely walk down the street with a can of soup in their pocket with no place to put it. But if asked to bring an article of non-perishable food in exchange for $1 off the ticket price to a show; experience tells me that people often, very often arrive with much more donation than was requested. But they should be notified, asked and thanked.
Some may say that I am a chaser after dramatic headlines when I say, “Pastor Sets Self on Fire Then Accepts Ice Bucket Challenge to Raise Money for Hunger Program.” Okay. I plead guilty. There. I feel better. Now please seek thy checkbook and send a donation to your local food pantry or soup kitchen. If you choose this one, send your tax-deductible donation to The Congregational Church of Patchogue, 95 East Main Street, Patchogue, NY 11772.