The importance of community unity


By Patti Payntor


What a great picture it was one Saturday morning in Carmel …

Forty-one thousand pounds of potatoes arrived by semi from Stevens Point, Wis., donated through the Society of St. Andrews to be distributed at St. Mark’s United Methodist Church to those in need. Or …

We could say a community comes together in unity by combining its resources, concern for the community and ability to connect so those in need can be fed, and know their need is heard by a caring, unified community. Or …

In the Christian community, we say there is nothing better than the body of Christ uniting together to hear the need and to respond in action.

However you say it … the connections made it happen.

The Society of St. Andrew is committed to introducing people to Jesus by meeting their needs … and one of those needs is physical hunger. So in 2011, this ministry gleaned 14 million pounds of food, 10.1 million pounds for potato and produce project, 28,000 people volunteered and 72 million servings of food were delivered.

Dave, a member from St. Mark’s, contacted the above to offer the church’s lot for a delivery site, and the church notified all Hamilton County food pantries and groups the potato delivery would happen.

A farmer from Stevens Point donated 41,000 pounds of potatoes (that we called “seconds,” but I could see nothing “second” about them), which were delivered by a truck driver (who volunteered his time and truck) to St. Mark’s that designated morning … And in time, all of the churches and agencies who had food pantries and opportunities to reach those in need had organized their own transportation to pick up thousands of pounds of potatoes … in time … all the potatoes were distributed!

What a picture it was one Saturday in Carmel, made possible because of organized groups of people and individual persons who care enough to pay attention to the needs of others. I am simply sharing this story I watched unfold so maybe all of us can realize the impact we as individuals, our organizations and our churches can make in the world. I am hopeful in 2012, I can see this kind of picture in Carmel even more!


Patti Payntor is the associate pastor at Carmel United Methodist Church. Contact her at [email protected].


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