COVID-19 keeps compelling our ministry to adapt our free meals programs to today’s ever-changing times. Prior to March 2020 in Ghana, we were on a roller coaster distributing free hot meals for needy underserved children in rural areas at central locations. Then out of the blue, COVID-19 hit us hard, totally disrupting our program. There were social distancing rules, lockdowns and terrifying cases of infections, affecting even some of our frontline volunteers and loved ones.
We could no longer continue with the provision of hot meals. Meanwhile, the pandemic was giving massive rise to unprecedented hunger in our target communities. Also, serving the underserved children with one hot meal at a time became woefully inadequate. To make matters worse, their parents started sending pleas for help, not only for their children, but also for themselves!
This called for a critical need to change our food distribution strategy. Instead of providing a hot meal per child, we started providing packaged food stuffs that will last a week per a needy family with children. This became very meaningful and quite impactful, serving the critical food needs of children, their parents as well as widows and orphans, one whole week at a time. Many have been giving testimonies, that but for the timely interventions of our ministry, they and their children could have died easily, since the benevolence of the government was not reaching them!
So, just as we were about settling down on this strategy to serve as many beneficiaries as possible, our ministry partner in the US asked a harmless question, during a virtual Bible studies on Zoom. He wanted to know how, in our view, the New Testament approach to “doing church”, can affect our food distribution program. The answer to this question gave birth to the evolution of perhaps our most effective strategy so far for our distribution program – moving from “house to house” to serve the food needs of the hungry!
We jump-started the strategy this past week, serving some 40 parents and 100 children on a pilot program. This strategy reflects one of the basics of true church recorded in Acts 2:46: “And they, continuing daily with one accord in the temple, and breaking bread from house to house, did eat their meat with gladness and singleness of heart.” Thanks to COVID-19, and the work of the Holy Spirit in our midst, we have refined our food distribution program to reflect the practice of true church, the New Testament way!
With this approach we can briefly share the gospel to many in the comfort of their homes! We pray the universal body of Christ will follow suit to go back to the basics of the Word of God, to practice true church in homes and small settings.