Needless to say Peggy's very involved with LVC, Read for Life, the church (especially rural ministries because that was her focus in seminary), and also part of her job is to also help churches transition when a pastor retires. In addition, she also distributes beans across Michigan as combating hunger is one of her main passions. She's always talking about these bean distribution sessions so finally I decided I would join to see what all the talk is about.
Hopping in the car with her and 300 lbs. of beans we drove down to Detroit to greet a congregation that would distribute the beans to their community. We arrived at a smaller but GORGEOUS church. They had beautiful stain glass windows and a large lovely garden growing in the back. The women of the church were particularly proud of their garden, with good reason! We then unloaded the bags of beans and set up the stations. Then we all sat down to listen to a nutritional session about why beans are so important and to mix them with a grain to get a full protein. They also discussed how to cook the beans and provided different easy recipes. Then we washed our hands and got to work bagging up beans into 2lb bags!!!!
|Bag of mixed beans.|
|50 lb. bags of beans.|
|Bagging Black Beans with their recipes.|
The church decided that they were going to distribute the beans 3 ways; one for a non-profit group, one for another community group, and then one for their own church (and people who stop by or families in need). The church was SO incredibly thankful for the beans! They saw the beans as a critical way to help families and to reach out to the community to help bring people into the church. As you may or may not know the unemployment rate in Detroit is in the low 40% (high 30% for Port Huron) so there is a LOT of need. It was such a pleasure to work alongside these ladies (it was all women who participated in bagging the beans). They really do care a lot about their community and I think if I lived near them I would probably regularly attend their church. It is uncommon to walk into a church and instantly feel part of the community, but maybe bagging the beans had something to do with that!
|Bags of Beans ready to be distributed to families.|