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Church aims to feed 400 families: 'When we see people hurting, we're going to blaze a trail'

'We wanted to do more than just pray for people.'
Posted at 12:12 AM, May 25, 2020

CHESTERFIELD COUNTY, Va. -- One by one volunteers with a Richmond area church handed out a week's worth of groceries to hundreds of families in need Sunday afternoon.

The boxes filled with food, diapers, hygiene and cleaning products were packed by a congregation hoping to make a difference.

"We want to be known as the church that when we see people hurting, when we're in the middle of a pandemic, that we're gong to blaze a trail,"The ChapelOutreach Director Nate Lobdell said. "We're going to be the ones that step up."

Lobdell said the church partnered with the Convoy of Hope organization about six weeks ago to help 450 families last month. But it did not take long for the congregation to realize the need was even greater- so they continued gathering goods.

"We wanted to do more than just pray for people. We wanted to do more than just say, 'Hey, God loves you.' We wanted to show the care of God, the concern of God in a way that actually connected to people's needs and resources," Pastor Brandon Samuel said. "This is other ordinary people who have a love for other people, who don't want people to feel alone, don't want people to feel isolated and don't want people to feel like they don't care."

A long line of cars waited to be greeted by church members from 2 to 4 p.m. at both locations who say they are grateful for the opportunity to help others.

"Both at our Midlothian campus and our Scott's Addition campus, people from the congregation came through this week and dropped off everything you're seeing being handed out," Lobdell said.

Church members said giving back to the community felt good.

"We can all do something small to make a difference for other people," one member of the congregation said. "My daughters, it's given us something to do. They're 7 and 11 and it's just given us a beautiful opportunity to do things for other people with other people."

The church said more than a 1,000 pounds of goods were handed out during the event.