Sometimes the Problem Is the Solution
A StartNew Church Outreach
When one way of doing things wasn’t working, St. Paul Lutheran Church knew they needed to start something new for their brick-and-mortar food bank.
“Grocery chains are not storing a lot of boxed and canned goods anymore,” explains Pastor Andy Ritchie from his church’s office in Lakeland, Florida.” But there is an abundance of fresh food available. … The problem is how you store it at brick and mortar.”
That food storage problem is what drove St. Paul to their solution — a mobile food bank called Moving Hope which launches in September. Taking perishable produce, meats, and dairy products directly from the food source to impoverished neighborhoods saves money, helps people who may not have transportation … and make an eternal difference!
“We want to be able to form relationships that will lead to an opportunity, as the Spirit gives, to be able to share Jesus.”
Moving Hope has already built several key relationships with local churches in the neighborhoods where they plan to deliver food. “They’ve helped us find the right times to transport food to their communities each week and what kinds of food the individuals and families want.”
Pastor Andy and his team are grateful for the coaching and training they’ve received as they near the end of their StartNew Incubator process with FiveTwo. And it’s already yielded some pretty amazing fruit!
“I guess it was our team’s first three-day training event in StartNew that we had to write our elevator speech,” remembers Pastor Andy. “And then about nine months ago, a guy asked me how’s the whole food pantry going. I went through that elevator pitch. And he said well, I want to buy you a truck.”
Through that elevator pitch, God provided the most crucial part of Moving Hope’s ministry that they needed to be mobile — a diesel truck.
Other business principles they’ve learned from FiveTwo have also greatly impacted Pastor Andy and his team. “Every time I’ve brought team members to StartNew trainings, they can’t believe it. They’ll say, ‘This is stuff that I used in my business life. But FiveTwo has taken it and made it into something that really can be used to extend the Kingdom.’”