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Hands4NY takes on hunger

Hands4NY is an initiative of the Upper New York Annual Conference of the United Methodist Church, aiming to feed one million people in New York state between June of 2011 and June of 2012. Trinity United Methodist in Clay is helping out with a food drive Oct. 15 and 16.

Hands4NY is an initiative of the Upper New York Annual Conference of the United Methodist Church, aiming to feed one million people in New York state between June of 2011 and June of 2012. Trinity United Methodist in Clay is helping out with a food drive Oct. 15 and 16.

— The conference chose to focus on hunger because it is not only a basic human need, but a basic spiritual one, as well.

“Our most sacred moments in the Bible revolve around food: in Exodus, there was manna; one of Jesus' temptations was food; and there would be no sacrament of Communion without the last supper,” Kohler said. “It is both very human and very sacred to break bread with our neighbors. In this age of indifference and information overload, the hunger for food and the hunger for the spiritual and sacred is still very important.”

Trinity United Methodist will begin its Impact Day efforts Oct. 13 and 14, when it will distribute fliers and bags to the smaller neighborhoods across from Morgan Road asking for canned goods and other nonperishable items. On Mission Sunday, Oct. 16, church members will walk the streets of the neighborhoods – Cherrington East and Waterhouse Landing – and collect the food residents have left out. The goods will then be tallied up and added to the totals collected by the entire Upper New York Methodist Conference.

“We keep track of the pounds,” Bryant said. “A certain number of pounds equals one person fed. The goal is to feed one million people in New York state by next June. This is our effort to help with that.”

Bryant said the church opted to take on smaller neighborhoods in order to make the effort more manageable for its congregation, many members of which are in their 70s and 80s.

“If we’re going to be the ones walking all over and picking up all of the food, we wanted to make sure we could handle it,” she said. “Something like Fairway East is just too big for us. That’s a huge effort. We may to another one of these before the year is over; we try to do a couple of Mission Sundays a year.”

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