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A line of vehicles getting boxes of supplies

A Volunteer’s View

Putting boxes in the trunks of cars – all morning, last week on Thursday. I couldn’t stop talking about it. Called my friends and family in Chicago. Sent photos to my daughters and friends – pallets, trucks, boxes, books.

What’s the “big deal?” seemed to be their reaction. “So? Big Deal!” No clue as to what really happened in that church parking lot – with pallets of boxes, your monster trailers, Price Rites volunteers, Awakening Churches Army of One Hundred!

My best friend in Frankfort, IL did have a connection with FTC that brought him in – “Yes, I know them (FTC) I’ve been sending my RMD money to “Feed The Children” for years.”Great, Bill. Your money is working. Thanks!”  For him it’s about a check! “

In that parking lot on Thursday it was more than a check. Much more for me.

Your boxes -“Feed The Children.” Green. Blue. Pink. Boxes! Heavy boxes! Everywhere. With a call to action on each one – “Feed The Children!”

The endless stream of cars kept coming. Over eight hundred. Your endless stream of boxes were right there waiting there for them. Price Rites groceries and cases of water right there too. And New Children’s Books!

This was hard work – more than my back had signed up for. This was good work – you and your team at FTC made happen. Your coordination, organization, enthusiasm, cooperation made it work flawlessly.

My team of four young, black women; a black state police officer; and the Pastor’s beautiful wife made the work seem easier, and lots of fun. Their bright smiles and joyful noise energized this “older than dirt” white guy who tried to keep up.

The atmosphere in that parking lot was that of a concert, a festival, a Woodstock – not a food distribution event. Your celebrity line-up and opening remarks set the stage and made it very clear this was big and this was special. Then, the music kicked in!

Our State Police and Smithfield Police made a powerful and timely statement of unity, community, appreciation and recognition. They worked hard too. Our team was easily able to enlist our State Senator to join in. The enthusiasm was contagious.

Then, there were Pastor Julius and Mabel who reminded each of us that this business of putting boxes in the trunks of cars is actually God’s work. Work we have been given the privilege of doing with our hands, hearts, and backs. Yes, this was a Big Deal!

Most of all, it was the Mothers and their Children. Sometimes with one child. Sometimes with two or three in the back seat. And sometimes five. When they thanked us, we thanked them for the privilege of serving and for their life-giving work in raising children.

Some Mothers cried. Priceless tears. “You don’t know . . . you don’t know! How much this means to me . . . to my family. You have no idea . . . thank you so much . . . God bless you.”
Please let your team know their hard work, everyday work, grind it out, perhaps at times, mundane work made something Magical, Special, Priceless, and BIG happen in a parking lot full of their boxes, pallets, and trailers. Yes, this was a “Big Deal!”

With a grateful heart,

Tom Marron

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