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Pantries will share $5,000

A successful holiday food pantry drive will help three localorganizations provide food for needy families or help replenishitems that have already been distributed prior to Christmas.

The campaign, sponsored by The DAILY LEADER and the Bank ofBrookhaven, raised $5,000 for food pantries at Brookhaven OutreachMinistries, St. Francis of Assisi/St. Vincent DePaul Ministries,and Union Hall Baptist Church. On Wednesday, $1,666 checks weredistributed to each of the three organizations.

“It’s going to buy a good bit of food,” said Mark Nettles, groupleader for St. Vincent DePaul, about the donated funds. “It’llcarry us for a couple of weeks.”

The Rev. Jerry Durr, of Brookhaven Outreach Ministries, recalleda familiar phrase: “Actions and deeds of kindness speak louder thanwords of good intentions.” He said the pantry campaign funds willhelp “tremendously.”

“It’ll help us to replenish a lot of the things we’ve givenaway,” said Durr, mentioning a distribution earlier this weekduring which more than 100 children and families came by to getfood items or toys.

Sheila Forrest, of Union Hall Baptist Church, said the fundswill help the church minister to the needs of both members andnonmembers in the area.

“If we see a need, naturally, we try to address it,” Forrestsaid. “It’s a ministry tool.”

Others agreed.

“We’re here to meet the needs of the community,” Durr said.”This makes it a lot easier for us to have the resources to dothat.”

More than 40 contributions by individuals, businesses or otherorganizations were made to the second-annual effort.

“Once again, the people of Brookhaven rose to the occasion,”said Shannon Aker, vice president of Bank of Brookhaven. “Everybodywas glad to help out, and we look forward to continuing this formany years to come.”

John Lowman, DAILY LEADER general manager, expressed similarappreciation.

“It will help a lot of people,” Lowman said.