“We’re supported by the Moorestown Ministerium,” said Connie O’Brien, co-coordinator of Live Civilly/Moorestown Ministerium Food Pantry. “We work in conjunction with them, and it’s considered the Live Civilly/Moorestown Ministerium Food Pantry … housed at Saint Matthew (Lutheran Church).”
Prior to COVID, food pantry visits were held indoors.
“ … We usually have several bags already arranged and then we’d have multiple tables of other things that people could choose from,” O’Brien said. “When the pandemic hit … we started to do the drive-by … I think we’ll continue outdoors as long as it seems to work.”
The food pantry is open every first and third Monday of the month from noon to 2 p.m. and 5 to 7 p.m. and identification and documentation of need is not required. Only nonperishable items such as pasta, sauce, macaroni and cheese, peanut butter and jelly, fruit, canned fruit, canned vegetables, soup, beans, cereal and rice are available.
“Traditionally, we have two bags of food that have the same items in them,” O’Brien explained. “It’s sort of a consistent way of ensuring that people get certain things, and it’s consistent each time.”
Saint Matthew welcomes people from all over.
“We do serve probably mostly Moorestown residents, but people, I think, (by) word of mouth have heard about us,” O’Brien said. “So they do come from the surrounding areas as well, and the door’s open.”
In the spring, O’Brien connected with a school guidance counselor to help a family in need, and she shared how she would like to see that spread throughout the community.
“ … They (churches) do the toiletry drive and it’s also something people can bring to church that’s not heavy and cumbersome,” she said.
Live Civilly/Moorestown Ministerium Food Pantry works with other churches and schools in the township to help those in need, and students have gotten involved.
“ … We’ve actually had a couple kids, too, who have, instead of birthday gifts, they’ve told their friends to bring canned goods,” O’Brien noted. “So we’ve even received some of those. That’s been nice, too.”
For more information on the drive-up food pantry, visit https://stmatthew-lutheran.org and/or the church’s Facebook page.