by Christina Coston, Mid-America Union Conference Outlook, courtesy Adventist Review
The Independence Samoan-English Seventh-day Adventist Church and the Independence Ebenezer Spanish Seventh-day Adventist Church in Independence, Missouri, United States, currently provide food for about 200 families each month through their mobile food pantry.
In 2019, the Samoan-English church wanted to find a new way to serve others. The church members learned the New Haven Seventh-day Adventist Church, located in the neighboring Kansas-Nebraska Conference, held a food pantry weekly and needed more volunteers. Members of the Samoan-English church started volunteering there.
“I started taking young people or whoever was available every Tuesday. And we enjoyed it,” Samoan-English church pastor Mark Tagaloa said.
In 2020, when the pandemic hit, churches and food pantries were closed. The Samoan-English church looked for ways to continue serving others during this time. Tagaloa and his wife, Sandee, decided they would use their own garage as storage for a food pantry.
“We were looking for ways to stay active as a church and also just to have purpose in a lot of people’s lives, especially as things were looking very dim with COVID,” Sandee Tagaloa said.