Christ Chapel works with the homeless, families and individuals in need such as people who lose their home through fire, people who are facing divorce or separation, people who suddenly become unemployed, and foster families anyone with a legitimate need.
Christ Chapel is a source of dual blessing, Jones said. We are a blessing for those we provide material goods, and those who volunteer, contribute financially or materially or help in other ways. For it is more blessed to give than receive.
Last year we rolled out the door 2,478 times with a large shopping cart loaded down with food. We figured the average retail value of what we gave each family was approximately $160, he said. Im sure the value is much greater at todays prices.
Jones estimates the center dispersed $400,000 worth of food to area families in need with the organizations expenses being slightly over $97,000.
In other words, we were able to give $160 worth of food for about $39, he said. That doesnt call for a pat on the back for us. It calls for praise to God. This is His work.
Already in 2006 the organization has served 703 families, he said, but future families coming in for assistance could find the shelves and cupboards bear.
That takes lots of food, he said. We are able to purchase some from the Food Bank. Most of it, however, is donated by caring people through the churches and individually.
Food donations needed: Take to Christ Chapel Share and Care Mission at 223 Inman St., off Ooltewah-Ringgold Road in Ringgold. For more information, to donate or to volunteer, call (706) 935-9045.
Christ Chapel Share and Care and Mission will hold a dedication service for its new Prayer Room on Sunday, June 4, at 3 p.m. The Pioneer Class of Ringgold First Baptist provided the Prayer Room in memory of Ken Abney and Betty Jo Land.
The funding for the organization comes from three main sources: church contributions, individual contributions, and thrift store sales.
The Clothes Closet and Things Thrift Store is open to the public three days a week, Tuesday, Thursday, and Saturday, from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m.
All the items sold have been donated to us for this purpose (providing food), he said. Thrift store sales have been drastically off so far this year. We dont know all the reasons for that. But it certainly has hurt our ability to serve.
The organization did receive the benefit of food drives conducted by local businesses and other organizations.
Curves (a health club) recently raised almost a ton of food through just such a drive, he said. We are grateful for all those who gave.
Jones said that the kindness the Chapel shares is often repaid in the least likely places.
A couple of months ago my wife and I were eating in a Fort Oglethorpe restaurant, he said. A young woman working there walked up to our table and said, Sir, you may not remember me, but I came to Christs Chapel and you helped me. I just wanted to say thank you. I have a job now and my children and I are doing well.
According to Jones, the organization helped Don Powell, who was then unemployed. After Powell secured a job at a snack food retailer he arranged for food items that were removed from the store shelves to be donated to the program.
Jones said Powells comment was you helped me when I needed help. It is only right that I should be helping you help others.
No matter what is ahead for the organization, Jones said, its employees and volunteers will persevere.
This ministry belongs to Christ. It shall not fail, he said. We just want to continue to be faithful to His calling to minister to needy families. If you are looking for a place to invest your time, money and talent, we think you could not do better than Christs Chapel.
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