Diocese to hold annual FaithFULL food drive

Catholic Charities staff and volunteers weigh and box food donations at Our Lady of Hope Parish, Blackwood, during last year’s FaithFULL food drive.
Photo by Mary McCusker

In keeping with the theme of Lenten giving and sacrifice, the Diocese of Camden will be holding its fifth annual FaithFULL Food Drive on Sunday, March 18.

With assistance from parishes, the Society of Saint Vincent de Paul and Catholic Charities, all Catholic churches in the diocese as well as various locations throughout South Jersey will have drop off points for non-perishable foods.

Here in South Jersey, one in six people, and one in five children, suffer from food insecurity, which means they might not know where their next meal is coming from. After the holidays, many food pantries have empty shelves while the requests for food are still great.

Through this donation drive, Catholic Charities, as well as food pantries across the diocese, are able to fulfill the corporal work of mercy, “feed the hungry.” In 2017, Catholic Charities, Diocese of Camden, was able to distribute a total of 61,995 pounds of food (238 pounds per day) to those in South Jersey who need it the most.

“The FaithFULL Food Drive is a fantastic opportunity to put our faith into action during the Lenten season by recognizing the value of those people in our region who go hungry throughout the year,” said Michael Laskey, vice chancellor for the City of Camden and the diocese’s director of Life and Justice Ministries.

“Together, we hope to refill those empty shelves to meet the challenge of hunger right here in South Jersey. It is our hope that our parishes and schools will work together to collect more food than any single faith community could raise on its own,” he said.

While the food drive is a one-day event, all are welcomed and encouraged to continue to collect and store food at their parish or school during the days and weeks before the drive. Parishes and schools across the diocese will be asked to collect the food on-site and then bring it on March 18 to any Catholic Church or any of the locations below between 10 a.m. and 2:30 p.m. to one of four of the following locations:

Atlantic County:

Community FoodBank of New Jersey, Southern Branch, 6735 Black Horse Pike, Egg Harbor Township 08234

Camden County:

Catholic Charities, Diocese of Camden headquarters (new drop-off location), 1845 Haddon Ave., Camden, 08103 (parking lot on White Horse Pike)

Our Lady of Hope Parish, Saint Agnes Worship Site (a Catholic Charities truck will be parked here), 701 Little Gloucester Road, Blackwood 08012

Cumberland County:

Catholic Charities, Diocese of Camden Family and Community Services Center, 810 Montrose Street, Vineland 08360

For full details about the drive, including items that are being collected, visit: www.CamdenDiocese.org/FaithFULL