St. Andrew's Community Garden for the Methuen Arlington Neighborhood
Living in the city, there is no room for the personal "kitchen gardens" common in many cultures. The inner city can be a "fresh food desert" with fresh vegetables hard to come by. As a way of working together, members of St. Andrew's and residents of the Methuen Arlington Neighborhood came together to build a community garden of 14 raised beds, in which residents can plant whatever items they like. The garden has been an enormous success, and gardeners enjoy the many varieties of vegetables and herbs that they harvest throughout the summer and fall.
For more information, go to our Community Garden page.
Recognizing that public assistance, and even minimum wages, are not always enough to pay the bills and feed hungry families, MAN, Inc. created a food pantry through which it provides weekly access to non-perishable food items, as well as fresh bread and milk. In support of our neighbors, members of St. Andrew's donate large quantities of a variety such items each week, including items from all of the food groups. The collection is blessed at the Sunday service. Items are then bagged, and picked up by MAN, Inc. staff each week to be distributed by the pantry to neighborhood families. The Church and MAN, Inc. meet to update the list of requested items, and ensure that the food is meeting the tastes and nutritional needs of recipients and their children.
Adopt a Child for Christmas
Likewise, extra funds for the purchase of Christmas gifts is not always present. Families submit clothing, underwear, and shoe sizes, and special requests of their children to MAN, Inc. which forwards them anonymously to St. Andrew's. Parishioners "adopt" a child, purchase the requested items, wrap them and bring them to church the week before Christmas. The gifts are blessed at the Sunday service, then given to MAN, Inc. to distribute to thankful parents to put under their respective trees.