Sometimes hunger isn’t what you think…

Last week I attended a community meal in Nevada, Iowa that is hosted twice a week by a church in town.  Similar events are held in towns all across Iowa each week. Various churches and organizations take turns preparing the meal for 40 – 60+ individuals each time.  I was pleasantly surprised to see a great mix of ages and family make up attending and learned that what started as a meal to serve low income struggling members of the community had evolved over time into a true “community meal”.  Everyone is welcome and encouraged to bring friends and neighbors.  It was very heartwarming to see neighbors breaking bread together with real plates and silverware and enjoying a night off from cooking and dishes.   I also realized that there exists another type of hunger in our society, perhaps fueled by technology and the lack of personal contact many of us enjoy, especially as we get older.  That is truly a hunger of the soul, characterized by loneliness and isolation.  As we take great care to feed the body in our food banks and pantries, we need to tend to the spirit of our neighbor as well.  I encourage you to find a community meal in your area and attend, whether you live alone or in a house full of people, and don’t forget to invite the neighbor lady who lives alone or the single fellow across the hall that you really never talk to.  We may not know which hunger they need to satisfy. 

Written by Cindy Jones, SNAP Outreach Worker for the Iowa Food Bank Association

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Posted on May 10, 2013, in Uncategorized. Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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