Patchen

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Thanks for generosity

Published 9:11pm Monday, January 14, 2013

Churches sometimes get accused of being insular, of focusing so much on what goes on inside their four walls that they forget the commands to love their neighbors and to “go ye into all the world, and preach the gospel to every creature.” (Mark 16:15)

But Suffolk Christian Church recently turned the concept of being insular on its head when they gave out some personal insulation to hundreds of their neighbors, preaching a silent gospel that the recipients will remember for years to come.

The church collected about 750 donated coats from schools, church members, other churches and individuals. Quality Cleaners donated its time and expertise to clean the coats that needed a little extra attention. Volunteers from the church sorted the coats by size and gender and hung them on racks, which were set up in the church’s basement. More volunteers arrived early on a Saturday morning to work the event.

Despite relatively warm temperatures on Saturday, hundreds showed up to find coats for themselves, family members, friends and neighbors who needed one.

“I think this is a blessing,” one woman, Jeraline Blunt, said as she looked for a coat for her neighbor.

Among the many injustices that can result from being poor is the inability to keep warm during the winter. A coat substantial enough to actually keep out the cold air is not a cheap item of apparel, and it could fall by the wayside for a family struggling to pay for rent, utilities and groceries. That could be embarrassing for a child who is the only one in his class without a coat.

Our thanks to Suffolk Christian Church, and all those who donated coats, for their generosity and for “loving their neighbors.”

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