CONROE (October 11, 2012) – Parents and children visited The Ark Church this past weekend, but instead of carrying a program or hymnal, these needy families pushed grocery carts as they shopped the more than 100,000 lbs. of groceries available to them for free.
It was all part of The Ark Church’s largest Saturday outreach ever—Serve Saturday—in which the church parking lot turned into a supermarket for the day to provide for local families in need. The event was held in partnership with the Montgomery County Food Bank and underwritten by Weisner Auto Group.
“We’re here for the community,” said Rob King, community pastor for The Ark Church, who helped oversee the event. “One of the church’s nine core values is ‘here to bless,’ and we love it when we have the opportunity to show the love of Christ to people through events like this.”
King and his staff coordinated 275 volunteers from the church who worked one-on-one with each of the 500 families (about 2,400 individuals). They helped gather groceries, push the cart, and load the car.
In addition to the grocery giveaway, The Ark Church arranged for about 70 families to visit four area nursing homes that same morning. These volunteers played games, talked with the elderly residents, and brought basic hygiene items donated from church members.
“I consider the elderly to be a forgotten part of this community, and this is one way we can bless them,” said King. “We’re hoping something will grow from that experience and visit the nursing homes more regularly.”
An outreach mission of the church, Serve Saturday enables and equips church members to show acts of kindness throughout the area on the first Saturday morning of each month. These volunteers build, clean, sort, help, and give anything—big or small—back to the community.
“We have a lot of community partners, and if they need something, we’ll send teams out,” said King. “It really doesn’t take a lot of people to make an impact, but we’re fortunate that The Ark has people who can and want to make a difference in our area.”
In addition to the Montgomery County Food Bank and Weisner Auto Group, other area businesses helped make this Serve Saturday event possible. Local H.E.B. and Kroger stores each donated 25 shopping carts for the day, and DeMontrond RV and Toyota Lift of Houston each provided a forklift for use.
“We’re extremely grateful for our community partners, who were somewhat blown away by the organization of our event and the sheer number of volunteers we provided,” said King.
“But what really touched my heart was seeing how our volunteers treated these people in need and gave that extra personal touch,” said King. “After all, these families are the whole point of why we do this.”
The Ark Church, located at 450 Humble Tank Road in Conroe, serves over 4,000 people during services on Sundays at 9:30 a.m. and 11:15 a.m., and on Wednesdays at 7 p.m.
Founded in 1996 by Senior Pastor Alan Clayton, his wife Joy, and two other couples, The Ark Church offers something for everyone—meaningful messages, energetic programs, and smiling faces. The Ark Church—You’re Welcome Here.