The recent food drive produced a lot of food donated by Katoomba residents for St Hilda’s and Anglicare to distribute to those in need.
It is easy for us to see how giving food to those in need shares Jesus’ love with them, but there is a louder message to many others. The junior high campers from CMS’s camp MMM collect the food each year, which is a great help to us. For the campers it is often the first time that they have done a service for the community, and some of them can be reluctant participants. Each year they are overwhelmed by the encouragement and emotional high they get from the generosity of those who give food.
The people who donate food do so because it is important to them that someone is doing something for those in need. For some, it is because they have been in need themselves or are struggling and they don’t want others to go through it alone.
One woman I visited told of an accident injuring her legs whilst her husband was in hospital. They had just moved to Katoomba and she knew no one in the area, she was unable to walk and so unable to shop, and consequently, she had no food for some days. Whenever we do something, that shows that St Hilda’s is not just a place of out-of-date rituals – we give the people of Katoomba a reason to think about God.
On August 15 we will be launching the first Community Thursday. This is an opportunity to provide assistance to a range of people who lack some of the life skills we take for granted, or who are struggling financially. As well as that, it is a demonstration to all residents of Katoomba of how much we care for people in need – not just their physical needs, but also their spiritual needs.
The event will take place in the main church building and so be very visible to Katoomba residents. The welcome that people feel will be discussed. It is my hope that some of our congregation members will drop in for a free sausage or a cuppa and perhaps have a brief chat with our visitors, and that they will feel both welcomed and the beginnings of some connections here.