Make us your home page
Instagram

Today’s top headlines delivered to you daily.

(View our Privacy Policy)

Don't feel like cooking, can't afford to eat out? Church has weekly picnic

Aaron Bennett, 17, talks with fellow Boy Scouts as they sand planks of wood to be made into picnic tables for Faith Covenant Church’s Wednesday dinners. From left are Chris Woodle, 12, Brandon Clark, 13, and Casey Weber, 14.

MARTHA RIAL | Times

Aaron Bennett, 17, talks with fellow Boy Scouts as they sand planks of wood to be made into picnic tables for Faith Covenant Church’s Wednesday dinners. From left are Chris Woodle, 12, Brandon Clark, 13, and Casey Weber, 14.

With news of the economy increasingly worrisome, members of Faith Covenant Church decided to do something to ease the lives of the church's neighbors.

On Wednesdays, beginning this week, the church will offer a picnic dinner of hot dogs, hamburgers and side dishes for a small donation. No RSVP is needed, which means church members will have no idea of how many guests to expect or how much food to prepare.

Though Pastor Jim DeGrado didn't mention the well-known biblical account of the loaves and fishes, he came close. "It's by faith that we are launching into this project,'' he said. "The name of our church says it all — Faith Covenant.''

Jane Lenhart, chairwoman of the church's local missions, said the congregation is initially preparing to serve 100 people. Last weekend, church members gathered to make picnic tables and benches for their guests. The project was led by 17-year-old Aaron Bennett, who volunteered to build the picnic furniture as his Eagle Scout project. Aaron, a member of Troop 261, which meets at Riviera United Methodist Church, raised money for the project and enlisted the help of church members and fellow Scouts.

DeGrado said members of his church, at 150 62nd Ave. NE, decided to offer the dinners from 5:30 to 6:45 p.m. to help neighbors get through difficult financial times.

"Some of our people who are in leadership thought about the state of affairs of Pinellas County, particularly St. Petersburg, as the price of gas goes up and with the tightening of money and the loss of jobs, and thought that what we would like to do is give our neighbors a break and invite them to dinner,'' he said.

Lenhart sees other benefits, including giving busy people a night off from cooking and cleaning. "So this will serve not only our neighborhood, but also the families that go to our Wednesday night activities. And what better way to meet and get to know our neighbors than with a meal,'' she said.

"And let them get to know us,'' the pastor said. "No strings attached.''

Waveney Ann Moore, Times Staff Writer

Don't feel like cooking, can't afford to eat out? Church has weekly picnic 03/15/08 [Last modified: Saturday, March 15, 2008 6:02am]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times

    

Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

Loading...
  1. Jones: Bucs need success to get national respect

    Bucs

    Tampa Bay Times columnist Tom Jones offers up his Two Cents on the world of sports.

    No respect

    Tampa Bay Buccaneers head coach Dirk Koetter walks the field during the second day of mandatory minicamp at One Buccaneer Place in Tampa, Fla., on Wednesday, June 14, 2017. LOREN ELLIOTT   |   Times
  2. Hopes fade after landslide destroys Chinese village (w/video)

    World

    Crews searching through the night in the rubble left by a landslide that buried a mountain village under tons of soil and rocks in southwestern China found 15 bodies, but more than 110 more people remained missing.

    Vehicles and people line a road leading to the site of a landslide in Xinmo village in Mao County on Saturday in southwestern China’s Sichuan Province. More than 100 people remained missing after the village was buried under tons of rocks and soil.
  3. Rookie Jake Faria dissatisfied with performance in Rays' loss to Orioles

    The Heater

    ST. PETERSBURG — The rookie pitcher walked to his locker Saturday after tossing the fourth quality start in as many tries to begin his career. He held the potent Orioles bats to three runs and for six innings gave his team a chance to win.

    Orioles third baseman Manny Machado tags out the Rays’ Mallex Smith at third after a rundown in the first inning.
  4. Thousands converge in two St. Pete locations celebrating LGBT rights

    Human Interest

    ST. PETERSBURG — Tom Rockhill didn't know what to expect Saturday, but by noon people were knocking on the door of his bar Right Around the Corner in Grand Central.

    (From left to right) Emma Chalut 18, gets a rainbow sticker on her cheek from her sister Ellie, 15 both of Jacksonville before the annual St. Pete Pride parade in downtown St. Petersburg on Saturday. This year the route was changed from the Grand Central and Kenwood area to Bayshore Drive.
[EVE EDELHEIT   |   Times]
  5. Retired Florida Supreme Court Justice Parker Lee McDonald dies

    TALLAHASSEE — A former Florida Supreme Court justice, who wrote a decision that prevented lawyers from excluding jurors because of their race, has died.

    Former Florida Supreme Court Justice Parker Lee McDonald died Saturday, the court said in a statement. He was 93.