The second annual Christmas food box distribution was held by Mission Marshall on Wednesday.
Following the pandemic and inflation, the organization’s ministry of food security has become even more unique.
“I think that food ministry is one of the closest things to what Jesus would do if he were still walking the earth,” said Mission Marshall Executive Director Misty Scott. “Personally, I feel a close alignment with that mission, to help feed the hungry as the gospels tell us.”
Mission Marshall’s Christmas boxes began as a response to those experiencing job loss and illness as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic. With children home for the holidays and unable to eat school lunches, food boxes were specifically designed to be “kid-friendly.” The box contained a total of 24 items, including cereal, peanut butter, pasta and holiday items such as canned sweet potatoes and a single ham.
This year, the organization produced 364 food boxes that were distributed to households throughout the area. Many of the local churches sponsored several food items. Every day in the days leading up to the event, the organization received assistance from at least 30 to 40 volunteers.
“One of the great things about the Christmas food box distribution is that a lot of people are off work,” explained Scott. “Kids are out of school, so we have this whole other set of people that volunteer this week that can’t volunteer the rest of the year, which is great for our community to be able to have that experience.”
The Mission Marshall Food Pantry serves Harrison and Marion County residents. Guests are eligible for groceries once a month. First-time visitors must present a government-issued photo ID as well as proof of residency. The mission is to make guests feel stable and safe.
Donations of spaghetti and fettuccine noodles, canned collard greens, canned turnip greens, canned spinach, and jars of peanut butter are currently being accepted by the food pantry. These items have been difficult to obtain, but the pantry hopes to have them when it reopens in January.
Citizens are encouraged to visit Mission Marshall and speak with staff about services and volunteer opportunities.