For I was hungry and you fed me – Matthew 25:35.

The Mission Project for the month of June was to live this Bible verse.  During the month of June we raised over $1700 to be used for this project.  We then worked with Chapter 25 in Lincoln, Nebraska to package meals for the hungry near and far.

For more than 10 years, Chapter 25 (previously known as Kids Against Hunger) has been working diligently with local communities, businesses, and congregations to eliminate local and worldwide hunger for children and families.  They distribute food through local sources and on a larger scope through Orphan Grain Train.  Last year, Orphan Grain Train distributed 4.6 million meals and has worked in 65 countries as well as helping people in need in the USA.

Martin Luther Church coordinated their volunteers with Chapter 25 and set their eyes on the evening of July 31st to carry out the project after the funds had been raised.  Twenty-four volunteers traveled from the Johnson area to the Orphan Grain Train / Chapter 25 facility in northwest Lincoln. We were blessed with beautiful weather so the warehouse was warm but comfortable enough with a fan!  Thrivent funds provided snacks and water which were enjoyed after the almost two-hour packing “party”.

Two “lines” of packaging made for lots of busy hands.

What’s in a package of food?  Sometimes referred to as a “Mercy Meal”, a package consists of ingredients formulated by food scientists to provide a rich source of easily digestible protein, carbohydrates, and vitamins needed by an undernourished child’s body and mind.  One package feeds six people by utilizing a pan and water.

Workers measured out a scoop of 6 dehydrated vegetables, a scoop of chicken flavoring with added 21 vitamins & minerals, a cup of fortified crushed soy, and a cup of high-quality white rice.

Positioned under the funnel is a bag ready to receive the four measured out ingredients.

The bag is then weighed.  Workers may need to add just a bit of rice or take some out to get the weight to be just right!

Each of the two separate packaging lines had a two stations to seal the bags shut.

Labels are applied to the bags and packed into boxes.  A few of our volunteers handled the boxes and re-filling of the ingredient tubs.  Like a well-oiled machine the job was completed in less than two hours!

7,560 meals packaged with the help of these volunteers and the donations of Martin Luther Church! 

MLC – Living Matthew Chapter 25