A diocesan-wide effort to feed the hungry

Bishop Dennis Sullivan blesses food at Church of the Holy Family, Sewell.
Photo by James A. McBride
Sylvia Loumeau of Catholic Charities weighs and tapes up boxes of food donations with two volunteers at Our Lady of Hope Church, Blackwood, on Sunday, April 2 as part of the Diocese’s FaithFULL Food Drive.
Photo by Mary McCusker

The Camden Diocese’s fourth annual FaithFull Food Drive took place last Sunday, in a six-county effort to feed the hungry in South Jersey.

Parishes, schools, individuals, youth groups, and organizations such as the Knights of Columbus and Society of Saint Vincent de Paul, from throughout the South Jersey area, collected non-perishable items.

After celebrating a morning Mass at Sewell’s Church of the Holy Family, Bishop Dennis Sullivan blessed the food going to Catholic Charities’ food pantries, local food banks or to parishes’ own efforts.

At Our Lady of Hope Parish’s Saint Agnes Church in Blackwood, Catholic Charities staff was on hand to help as stuffed caravans of food rolled into the parking lot, as were Absecon’s Holy Spirit High School football team, at the Egg Harbor Township’s Food Bank.

In the past few months, the diocesan office of Life and Justice put out word of the one-day food drive to schools, parishes and families, hoping they would share what they have in this Lenten season with their brothers and sisters.

“One in five youth is dealing with food insecurity in South Jersey,” noted the office’s director, Mike Jordan Laskey.

Quoting Peter Maurin, co-founder of the Catholic Worker Movement, Laskey said the event was designed to “make it easy for people to do good.”

He saw the church’s excitement last Sunday, especially in the faces of youth, to live out the Gospel call to love and care our neighbor.

“We’re all part of this, one family of faith,” Laskey said.

“We showed the community that this is who we are as a church.”