Nearly 400 pick up food boxes provided by church

Kingdom Life Cathedral Ministries raised more than $7,000 to buy food

December 18, 2010|By RICHARD F. BELISLE |
  • Bishop Sterling Porter, pastor of Kingdom Life Cathedral Ministries in Ranson, W.Va., organized a food giveaway event Saturday at the Ranson Civic Center. Nearly 400 people picked up 50-pound boxes containing food and other essentials.
Photo by Richard F. Belisle

RANSON, W.Va. — Buying and handing out 50-pound boxes of food and other essentials to 400 needy people was a major undertaking for a small Pentecostal church tucked way in a back corner of Ranson.

"It's all about the people," said Bishop Sterling Porter III, pastor of Kingdom Life Cathedral Ministries at 513 W. Third Ave.

Nearly 400 people came to the Ranson Civic Center Saturday morning to pick up food boxes provided through the generosity and volunteer efforts of Porter's 300 parishioners.

Before the distribution began, Porter gave a rousing sermon inside the cavernous civic center. His boisterous homily moved his audience to stand and cheer hallelujahs and amens.

Those receiving the food boxes were cleared through the state Department of Health and Human Services, Porter said.

This is the first year for the food distribution project, he said.

The congregation raised more than $7,000 to buy the food through the Feed the Children program, an Oklahoma City-based international nonprofit that in 2008 distributed more than 133 million pounds of food to the needy in 119 countries, according to the program's Web site.

"We've been working with Feed the Children for about a year," Porter said. Volunteers unloaded the truck that hauled the food to the civic center on Friday.

In addition to the individuals and families who received food Saturday, several churches and outreach ministries were given boxes for distribution to those in need in their areas, Porter said.

Church members raised $4,500 in a walk-a-thon fundraiser earlier this year to pay for Saturday's event.

"The rest came from the general church budget," Porter said.

"We're excited about helping anyway we can. We give them food, but we want them to know the Lord," he said. "We're seeing more need now than ever before. We're planning an even larger event for next year."

The Kings Apostle Church World Ministries has five churches under its umbrella, including Porter's church. The other four are in Martinsburg, W.Va., Waynesboro and Mercersburg in Pennsylvania and Hagerstown, he said.

Porter has been bishop of the church for 10 years. He moved to Charles Town from Annapolis, he said.

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