The Faith Center–Spring Branch’s ministry verse is Matthew 25:35, “For I was hungry and you gave me something to eat, I was thirsty and you gave me something to drink, I was a stranger and you invited me in.” They are continuing to live that verse out as they serve the community amidst the coronavirus outbreak.
The Faith Centers, with locations at Spring Branch, Harwin, and Timbergrove-Heights, are extensions of the ministry of Houston's First. Throughout the year, God uses the Food Pantry at the Faith Center–Spring Branch to feed more than 400 families and 1,400 individuals each month. During the outbreak, they have seen a more than 700% increase in the number of families served each day.
Monique Rodriguez, the Administrative/Donation Coordinator at the Faith Center–Spring Branch, explains how they have continued to meet the needs of the community while exercising precaution.
“We have been giving food, donated by the Houston Food Bank, to an average of 110 families per day while using our drive-thru method,” Rodriguez shares. “Along with that, we have been working with an organization to help deliver food to high-risk families and individuals so they don’t have to go out.”
The normal procedure when someone comes to the food pantry is to have a Houston’s First staff member or volunteer share the Gospel and pray with them. Faith Center–Spring Branch continues to minister to the community as they drive through to receive their food bag.
“We have a Gospel tract that we insert in their food bag and we have a big sign as they drive up that has a number to call if they want prayer,” Rodriguez explains. “Once they call that line, a Houston’s First staff member will pray with them. A volunteer will follow up with them as well to see how they are doing”
Rodriguez shares the policies and procedures that allow staff and volunteers to serve people while at the same time staying safe.
“We are only allowing a maximum of 10 people in the building at this time. Some of our precautions include ‘sanitation stations’ where we sanitize our hands, disinfect our phones and other belongings,” Rodriguez describes. “Everyone is required to wear gloves and a mask.”
Rodriguez shares that they are operating two pantries out of one Faith Center location during this time.
“Our Harwin location has a food pantry as well but is closed for a reason unrelated to the virus.” Rodriguez shares. “They see a lot of people who can't make it to our Spring Branch location so we have boxes of food made and volunteers deliver the food to them,” Rodriguez shares.
Rodriguez describes the importance of a ministry like the Faith Center actively serving the community during this time.
“In times of crisis, people need help and guidance. We do our best to provide both of those,” Rodriguez explains. “We help by giving food to those in need, and we guide clients towards our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ.”
The Food Pantry is currently not accepting donations at their location. However, the Food Pantry is sending a truck around town Apr 28-30 to receive your donations. Find locations, times, and acceptable items on our FILL THE TRUCK! event page.
You can also support those in need by giving to these area ministries and organizations: