Hunger Is Not a Disease

Ho Hum – Just Another Miracle


No question about it, miracles do happen.  Maybe you don’t believe in miracles.  I do.  I was in denial for the longest time.  But, after awhile, I had to face reality.  There were simply too many coincidences:

One September pantry day a few years ago the lines were longer than usual and the shelves were emptying out fast.  “I think we’re going to run out of food” I mentioned under my breath to Marie Duane, a volunteer from St. Gregory’s Episcopal Church.

“Do we have a plan for this kind of event?” I asked myself.

Then, to quote the Reverend Mike Huckabee, “God showed up.”

I know this statement is  applicable here because  the moment I began muttering under my breath, it was  as if someone had blown a whistle.  A red haired woman drove up in a tan SUV filled with bags and bags of food she collected from Congregation Agudas Achim in Kingston.  Harriet Kazansky unloaded enough canned and boxed food to get us through the day with some food left over!

One December, the Wednesday after Christmas, to be exact, John Mower drove up with a car trunk filled with canned vegetables for the pantry.  What a gift!  Our pantry was completely bare that December.  Then, the next day, along came another trunk load.  He finally quit after three trips to the pantry.  He filled the shelves for the next pantry day.

One Tuesday morning in the pantry, Peggy Johnson was upset because she didn’t have enough food to prepare the take out bags for the fourteen families she delivered food to every week.  Food had been scarce and this week the take out area seemed  empty.  A large man suddenly walked in the door carrying an extremely large box filled with canned and boxed food.  A Kingston fireman who grew up in the Woodstock area, he made Peggy promise to never reveal his name.  However, she didn’t have to keep his gift a secret:  in one trip down the pantry hallway, carrying a box large enough to hold everything needed, he single handedly provided all the food for the home bound families that week.  Our pantry has never heard from him since.

In the pantry hallway, we had an Item of Dignity closet.  where shoppers could take a roll of toilet paper and one other item each time they shopped.  We were forbidden by the building committee to have clothing in this closet.

One Wednesday afternoon I noticed a pair of new boots.  I have no idea where they came from.  They certainly didn’t come in disguised as deodorant or shampoo.  Anyway, Prasida needed a pair of winter boots.  One of the volunteers took them off the shelf.

“Prasida, can you wear wear these boots?”  Prasida came over to the closet, looked them over, and put them on.

“Ahhh – a perfect fit!  Thank you Amma!  Now I won’t have cold feet this winter in my summer sandals.”

At one point, I was reading Doreen Virtue’s book “Archangels and Ascended Masters”.  One night I read about Saint Therese, also known as the Little Flower.  The story goes that if one prays to St. Therese, she will send a rose as a sign that the request has been heard.  The next day, I found a rose on the pantry floor as I walked into the room.

But, the real miracle happened repeatedly in the pantry as the shoppers and volunteers both began to heal and change and grow from the community, their commitment, and the experiences in the pantry.  When people first started coming to the pantry, either to volunteer or shop, they were focused inward on their own problems, issues, health.  After a short time, they began to focus on their friends in the pantry.  They became concerned about something bigger than themselves and their private struggles.

In short…they became new.

Thanks for reading this blog/book.  The stories are true.  The people are real.

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The book is still in progress!  It’s going to happen!


And…it’s Walmart time again!

Pantry HND 3“Just asking for  food to feed the hungry.”

“Thank you for your donation”.


Each of us  working for the pantry outside the Walmart has a different introduction we use when we speak to the shoppers.  We’ve been outside the Walmart monthly since last fall.  The only month we didn’t stand outside the entrance was December when the Salvation Army puts out its volunteer ringing the bell.

In February, the temperature was 2 degrees.  Standing outside the store in July, we all commented that the broiling heat was better than the cold.

But, really, in our hearts of hearts, we don’t care what day it is, what the time is, what the temperature is.  What matters is that we’re outside the entrance and it’s our favorite place to be.

No, I’m not lying.  I totally adore being outside the Walmart.  We’ve made friends with everyone:




On Friday, a young couple came up to show off their brand new baby who wasn’t even here yet at our September visit.

One of my favorite people at the Walmart is a homeless woman who always manages to bring us a can of food.

Employees drop by throughout the day to see if we’re okay.

In the midst of all the community, we’re raising $$$ to buy food to keep the pantry open another month.  And…that’s no small job.  Our census rises every month.  Last month, we served 800 people.

For a young pantry, just a little over a year old, to have the food and funds to feed 800 people is something to be extremely proud of.  Reservoir Food Pantry volunteers can do this because they know how to focus on the task at hand.

Prasida, Bob, Louise, Barbara, and Garrett know how to focus on feeding the people.  The focus is completely “with us” all three days.

This focus offers opportunity to:

really enjoy what we’re doing.

set goals.

bond with the people we meet.

keep our pantry open.

As the coordinator, I’m often asked:  “Who sponsors your pantry?”

Thank you to everyone at the Walmart, both customers and employees.  Without you, we wouldn’t be able to feed 800+ people every month.  When we feed the hungry, we strengthen our whole community.  We couldn’t do this without your support.

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Peace and food for all.

Thurman Greco