Ahead of Thanksgiving, there has been consternation regarding how to keep our families safe from COVID-19 while maintaining some celebration. That topic is worthy of great consideration; however, I urge you also to remember those within our community who do not have access to a meal for next Thursday’s holiday. 

Last year, even before the pandemic’s current economic ramifications, 300,000 people within Nassau County (nearly one-third of whom are children) faced food insecurity despite living within affluent communities. According to federal guidelines, to qualify for supplemental benefits, a family of four must fall below the poverty level – a household income of $25,750. This assessment does not reflect the cost of living within our area, leaving those in need overlooked and under-supported. 

Food insecurity compels many to use local food pantries. Our congregation has set a goal to collect 2,020 pounds of food for the year 2020 to support the Lutheran Social Service’s New LIFE Center food pantry in Uniondale, a priority ministry this year. New LIFE fed 290 families last month through generous donations given by multiple organizations. Now, they are preparing 350 food baskets for Thanksgiving. These baskets will include over 900 pounds of frozen chickens and turkeys that were donated by a generous family from our congregation and purchased and delivered by other church volunteers. 

We invite you to help families to have a Thanksgiving meal by contributing nonperishable food items this weekend. Please join us this Sunday, November 22nd, at 10:30 AM (note new worship time) for our outdoor worship (weather permitting). We also invite you to our Thanksgiving Eve worship service on Wednesday, November 25th, at 4:00 PM.