Thanksgiving Brings a Sea of Purple Bags
Nov 10, 2020 | by Discovery Class
First United Methodist Church of Hurst has been providing Thanksgiving Bags to our community since the 1980’s. For most of the last 25 years, members of the Discovery class have led this project. Though for several years, during the early 2000’s, members of Point of Grace provided leadership.
In the beginning, the church provided approximately 200 bags to families. Over the years, the need has grown. Our church now provides almost 1,000 bags of food and turkeys to families in our community. The generosity of FUMC Hurst impacts thousands of people each year, and has an economic impact of approximately $25,000.
Most of the families that receive bags are clients of Mission Central. We also assist families from our adopt-a-schools and several other groups. For the last several years, bags and turkeys have been provided to students in FUMC Hurst’s ESL classes. The bags are the focus of a lesson during class on the day they are distributed to students.
During a normal year, Discovery Class members organize and oversee the Thanksgiving Bag ministry. On Sunday mornings in November leading up to Thanksgiving Day, members hand out purple bags with a shopping list that includes items needed for a traditional Thanksgiving dinner. Class members prepare sign-up forms and deliver them to the schools. Completed forms are collected from the schools and family information is entered into a spreadsheet that is used to help distribute the bags and plan deliveries to those who were unable to come to the church. Class members work together to plan the routes and help with deliveries. Many church members work alongside the Discovery class, enjoying the opportunity to be part of this ministry that brings Thanksgiving to so many families.
Needless to say, 2020 has not been a normal year. This year, to minimize contact and practice social distancing, we have simplified the process. We are not requiring advance sign-ups. Families are receiving flyers from Mission Central and our school partners with instructions on how to receive their bags and turkeys. On November 21st, bags will be available on a first come, first served basis in a drive-thru distribution.
The sea of purple bags is growing, lining the halls and filling the nooks of the Atrium. Members of the Discovery Class have been at the church accepting food, sorting and packing each bag, making sure each one has all the items on the shopping list. The class will also be handling the distribution of the bags to limit the number of people on campus.
If you would like to participate in this ministry, CLICK HERE to download the shopping list, to check drop-off dates and times, or to find out how to contribute to the turkey fund.