Alabaster church distributing food items to those who need them
By NATHAN HOWELL | Special to the Reporter
ALABASTER – As many are facing food and pay insecurity during the COVID-19 pandemic, the Episcopal Church of the Holy Spirit in Alabaster is seeking to help those in need through its monthly Beans and Rice ministry.
On the third Saturday of each month, the church distributes bags of groceries including uncooked beans and rice, non-perishable food items and pantry staples to distribute in a curbside pickup event for those who are in need of groceries.
According to Father Eric Mancil, Rector of the Episcopal Church of the Holy Spirit, this ministry is a non-questions asked event available for anyone who needs it.
“This ministry was actually started long before I arrived at the church. They have been doing it for more than 10 years,” Mancil said. “I think it really adds an extra helping hand to people who might be food insecure.”
During the time of the COVID-19 pandemic, addressing these concerns is more important than ever.
“Even now, during this pandemic, it is important that we do all we can to help our neighbors in need,” Mancil said. “I think people who come and get groceries really benefit from it in some small way.”
While some might feel anxiety about asking for help the Episcopal Church of the Holy Spirit is providing this service without judgement for anyone who needs it.
“This ministry is for anyone who needs it,” he said. “When people come, we greet them with a smile. We don’t ask any questions about the people who come. We want everyone to feel welcome, and we don’t want them to feel like they will be judged or that they would have to answer any questions when they come.”
The parish also operates a “Little Free Pantry,” which is available at any time for those who need assistance with food. This pantry is located in the parking lot of the church.
The Beans and Rice ministry is held the third Thursday of each month from 9 a.m-noon at the church, which is located at 858 Kent Dairy Road, and is available as a curbside pickup only.
For more information about the Episcopal Church of the Holy Spirit visit Facebook.com/Holysiritalalabaster