By Portia Williams
SANDHILL, Ky. - Pastor Gary Newman and members of his congregation at Sandhill International Pentecostal Church of Christ, looked beyond a good meal and recreation for their own families on the 4th of July holiday to reach out and help those in need. SIPCC distributed 750 meals Friday during their community picnic and meal delivery event.
“As we celebrate Independence Day, many people do not have the opportunity to celebrate independently, because they do not have the means to do so. We try to share what we have with them, and to enjoy the happiness. It is more than just fireworks, it is about helping people,” Newman said.
He said donations from Giovanni’s and Pepsi were instrumental in their effort for the community picnic.
“Giovanni’s of Ashland has donated 750 hamburger patties, and we have bought 750 hot dogs, and Pepsi donated the drinks, and then we put it all together to make it a complete meal. We just deliver to who ever needs something to the different housing projects, and to the people living underneath the viaduct in Portsmouth. We go just about everywhere handing out meals, to Farley Square, Wayne Hills,” Newman said. “Some of the other areas include the South Shore apartments, we usually take meals out there on Rt. 7 to folks that live out in that area. We also go to some of the homeless shelters to people that don’t normally get to cook out.”
He said this was not their first effort of feeding those in need throughout the community.
“We did something similar in 2012 when that big storm hit, so we ended up delivering food to people that did not have any power,” he said. We weren’t able to do this in 2013, so we decided to do it this year.
He credits God for the opportunity to serve the community.
“I think the Lord Jesus gives us these opportunities, and when he opens the door up for us to be able to do something like this, then we have to take that opportunity and do it. It is all about him. It is just amazing how it has all come together,” he said.
In addition to the meals they delivered throughout the community, SIPCC also held a picnic on the church grounds in Sandhill, offering a meal, as well as inflatable rides for children to enjoy.
Portia Williams can be reached at 740-353-3101, ext. 286, or on Twitter @PortiaWillPDT.