USDA food report provides impetus for holiday giving

If you contribute to a domestic or international ministry your mailbox and e-mail inbox will be filled up soon if it isn’t already. In all the stories we’ve done about various Christian outreach efforts, the point that November and December are counted on as an important source of income is clear.

Choosing what ministry(ies) to support is a very personal decision, as it is with any non-profit. Undoubtedly your life experiences and personal faith journey impact that greatly.

Food as a need is brought out at churches and food banks regardless of where else you write your check or volunteer your time. The importance of providing for the local food pantry or engaging with community organizations which work with the poor is underscored by a USDA report released this week showing a huge 36 percent leap in hungry Americans from 2007 to 2008. That jump brings the estimated total to 49.1 million people.

Doing what small part we can do on a local level isn’t an excuse to set aside contributions to children overseas or water projects in the developing world. It is, however, an application of the old environmental maxim to act locally and think globally; and it’s something which in difficult times we need to bear in mind beyond November and December.

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