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Zion Hope church has been serving the Devington neighborhood for several years and decided to become a Missional Food Pantry. 35+ volunteers came to help during their relaunch on 6/2/18 and 63% of the recipients accepted Christ in their heart! The hungry are fed, the Gospel is preached and the volunteers are discipled – Beyond This Hunger
is a social media storytelling contest created to foster a public conversation about giving and to inspire more people to give. Would you share a story about how and why you give to the causes you care about? The stories can be about you or someone else, about giving of time, money, goods, or skills, and what inspires you?
The contest will be handing out a number of prizes throughout the month, with the winning story writers receiving grants up to $10,000 to give to their favorite nonprofit organization!
It’s easy to enter. Just submit your story here and follow these three steps to start gathering votes:
The 30 stories with the most votes will become the Finalists.
And remember to share with your network and community!
Some additional tips and requirements:
As part of our community, we hope you might take a few minutes to reflect on why giving matters to you, share your story in the #MyGivingStory contest, and, of course, consider naming us as the recipient of a grant prize if you win one. There’s no time like the present!
Submit your story today and share so we can help celebrate how and why you give back!
What is a “Missional” food pantry? It’s a food pantry that provides food while sharing the Good News of Jesus Christ, baptizing and discipling new believers.
Indy Vineyard Missional Food Pantry provides adult and children’s Bible study for the recipients, their families and the neighborhood. Last month, one person accepted Jesus Christ as her Lord and Savior during the Bible study!
Welcome to UJIMA’s new website. Ujima is a new partner for FHL Community. It comes alongside FHL’s missional food pantry training and wrap around services by providing meal and outreach programs for at risk inner city youth. UJIMA provides hot meals along with mentoring and tutoring support families in the Central Indiana area.
This donated box truck served the FHL Missional Food Pantry Network members faithfully in the past year. It now needs new engine. Please help our food insecure neighborhoods by helping us to network for a new or reliable used Box Truck donation. Contact us at 317- 572-5793 or email firstname.lastname@example.org God bless!
Scheduled cleaning and reorganizing the pantries at Shiloh MBC and at Barnes UMC. Thanks to Indy Urban Acres and Teenworks for their help!
On April 21st, Faith Hope and Love Community, Inc. was at Barnes United Methodist Church. We see a great harvest arising out of missional food pantries. Several churches are coming together in unity under the You Feed Them Missional Food Pantry (MFP). They reported 8 salvations and 1 baptism during one of their missional food pantry sessions. 3 new MFPs were also in attendance for their on-the-training to learn from one another.
FHL Community is introducing its new film about mission food pantries called “The River of Hunger II – Unveiling Transformation. It is based on the following scripture:
Do not conform to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. – Romans 12:2a (NIV)
A great idea that could help food desert neighborhoods. It was retrofitted to be a mobile grocery store!
Watch as Merlin delivers a brief look at the reality of hunger in Indianapolis.
After much preparation, we are now set for this Saturday’s FHL Community Missional Food Pantry Conference at University UMC. Thank you to Annie Gonzales, Lydia Davis, Donna Cherry and others who have worked so hard in updating the teaching materials! Here we go!
After months of careful planning, methodical preparation, intercessions and intense training, Feed My Sheep Missional Food Pantry is ready for Graduation and Certification!
Congratulations, Feed My Sheep! Greater things are yet to come!
We are looking forward to the Grand Opening of Feed My Sheep missional food pantry on Wednesday, April 10 at 6pm.
Are you interested in obtaining a missional food pantry certification for your food pantry? Contact FHL Community by phone at: 317-572-5793 or email: email@example.com . FHL Missional Food Pantry Training School uses the FHL Missonal Food Pantry Training Manual to train students.
You can sign up to help Feed My Sheep under our April Volunteer Opportunities.
FHL was at the Missional Food Pantry Community Prayer Walk on a beautiful day. It was a blessing to visit the FHL Community Prayer training for Cross Church and we joined them for their Community Prayer Walk. We prayed for the residents, gas stations, restaurant/bar, and other local businesses.
Other congregations in the area were invited to join in on the prayer walk. The purpose of FHL community prayer walks are to help the missional food pantry in training pray for their future clients and the area but also to assess the area for its needs and the culture.
Community prayer walks are part of the missional food pantry training approach and are done before the launch of the new missional food pantry and before their graduation.
The last Table Talk “Understanding the deeper needs” and FHL Missional Food Pantry at the MLK Center was held recently.
FHL Community’s new location starting April 1st (Easter Sunday) will be at 1100 W. 42nd St. Indianapolis 46208.
“WHEREAS, Faith Hope and Love Week is a week-long period of raising awareness in addressing hunger beyond providing food…”
“Beyond This Hunger” is an event where community leaders, celebrities, business owners and the public embark on a journey of eating one meal per day during “Faith Hope and Love Week”, July 22-28. Each participant will embark on the 0-0-1 campaign. (0-breakfast, 0-lunch, but 1-supper).
In recognition of “Faith Hope and Love Week”, the Ambassadors will only eat one meal per day. We believe that engaging in this activity will help us and others shed some light on what it’s like to go hungry. The goal is to raise money for 100 impoverished Central Indiana families to participate in a 20-week program to learn how to get “Beyond This Hunger” and, to support the FHL operations.
If you’re not an Ambassador yet, it’s not too late to join us. If you wish to support us but are unable to be an Ambassador, there are 3 ways to get involved: Donate and/or Share this event via social media, email, or through your personal conversations and Pray for the Ambassadors that they would have the strength to eat 1 meal a day for 7 days.
As part of the program, we will boycott all snacks and 2 meals each day encouraging all of our friends, family, co-workers, neighbors, etc. via email, text, and social media, to join the “Beyond This Hunger” program by pushing out hunger facts, sharing stories from the field, creating awareness of the need, etc. Starting today, you will also hear us on KLove and other media.
Please prayerfully consider supporting us in our quest to address hunger beyond a bag a food.
UJIMA Community Services, a ministry of Faith Hope and Love is now the 4th largest Summer Feeding Program in Marion County. Not only they provide nutritious food but also ministers to the children in many ways. A few days ago, 45 children went to the Zoo for a day camp – Beyond This Hunger.
THANK YOU for all the Ambassadors, the donors and you who have supported us in prayers and encouragement. We have officially ended the Beyond This Hunger challenge but a few of us are continuing the challenge for another 7 days until August 4th. We felt that going beyond 7 days of hunger would give us deeper understanding of ourselves and the food insecure. Go here to read more stories that will give you deeper understanding of hunger: https://www.fhlcommunity.org/category/beyond-this-hunger/
Our campaign celebration was attended by several Ambassadors and donors. We had fun listening to stories and testimonials. Thank you to Boombozz Pizza in Carmel for donating the appetizers and a place to gather.
As we extend the challenge, you are invited to join us this week to experience how it’s like to be hungry to raise awareness and money to send willing individuals to an assessment-based curriculum to help get beyond hunger. Go to this link for more information how to get involved: https://www.fhlcommunity.org/beyond-this-hunger/
God bless you,
Testimonial: Food, Best practices sharing, Collaboration and Wrap around services.
We want to thank our donors and partners who have been providing generous donations all these years. — thanking God at Faith Hope and Love Community, Inc.
This is the view from our office – Tarkington Park. While the $5 million park makeover is going on, the local residents were enjoying the beautiful weather that day. There are 30,000 people living within 3-mile radius of the park.
On a recent Friday starting at 1:30p, a few of FHL volunteers prayed and walked 7 times around the park. All were welcome to join us. Our meeting took place at the FHL office. A short briefing was held at 1:30p then we walked around the park 7 times while praying specifically for neighborhood transformation.
Two hours and ten minutes. That’s how long it took us to do the prayer walk that afternoon.
One of our recent Table Talks was held at Eastern Star Church.
The theme for this Table Talk was identification of food pantries and soup kitchens in the area. What can the community do together to address hunger?
The solution to hunger involves more than just giving a bag of groceries to our clients. Since the issue of hunger goes beyond food, we need to understand its basic causes. Table Talk #29 (02/08/18) explores the importance of understanding the deeper needs of the food insecure population to uncover the roots of hunger in our city.
FHL Community was honored to provide food for the volunteers at Midwest Food Bank in Indianapolis. Thanks to our FHL missional food pantry supported “You Feed Them” team who volunteered to serve.
Many food bank clients are food insecure because of under- and unemployment:
• 70% percent of all adult pantry clients are unemployed.
• 33% percent of unemployed adult pantry clients are recurrent pantry clients.
• 29% of adult pantry clients who are employed full time are recurrent pantry clients.
• 32% of adult pantry clients who are employed part time are recurrent pantry clients.
• The median monthly household income of food bank clients is $927 and the median annual household
income is $9,175.20
Source: Feeding America, “Hunger in America,” p. 123 and 127
The FHL Community Missional Food Pantry Training Center aims to “Shorten the Line” with our missional food pantry Training approach. If you would like to learn more, please join our Table Talks
FHL was honored to provide and serve roast beef poboy lunch for the volunteers of one of the partners – Midwest Food Bank (MFB Indiana). Indianapolis is blessed to have a ministry like MFB.
Although handing out a bag of food is good, it’s not enough. FHL’s new video – “The Parable of the River of Hunger” was shown at a Sunday service at Zion Hope Church.
Often, efforts in hunger relief are measured by the number of people served or the pounds of food distributed. While these are important and we want to be a part of that effort – we truly desire to SHORTEN THE LINE. We focus relationally with the person and their greater needs as we give them food – ultimately, reducing the need for the very services we provide. It is about people. It is a real problem. And it is here in our city. FHL aims to be a catalyst for change by engaging in relationships with food insecure neighbors on their path to self-sufficiency. This includes
I wanted to invite you to an important event to help the hungry and food insecure here in Indianapolis. Faith, Hope, & Love is a local organization on the front lines of this issue and we are hosting a fund raising event at Butler University on Friday, October 14th at 6:30pm.
It would mean a lot to me personally to have you join me for an inspiring evening to share how FHL is uniquely working with individuals and families who struggle with food insecurity in Indianapolis through neighborhood food pantries. FHL’s belief is to focus relationally on the person and their greater needs as we give them food, ultimately desiring to reduce the need for the very services we provide.
To actually shorten the line.
FHL supports a network of neighborhood food pantries in four key ways:
1. Storing and distributing food
2. Sharing best practices in delivering food with dignity
3. Promoting collaboration and partnership to share resources
4. Providing a menu of shared services to address physical and spiritual needs.
FHL is making a bigger impact than ever in the lives of these individuals. We would like to share some very exciting developments and why this matters for our city while you attend our fundraiser dinner.
The registration is below and the tickets are only $75 each. Your ticket purchase is a 100% donation to the organization and you can make a difference by just buying your ticket. Please click the registration button below and then click on the green “TICKETS” button at Eventbrite.
Blessings to you!
Merlin Gonzales, President and Founder, Faith Hope and Love Community, Inc.
If you are unable to attend, would you consider donating anyway? I would be happy to personally share what the organization is up to and how your donation is making a difference. Please click the donate button below and then click the green “TICKETS” button on the registration page. There is a donate only option at EventBrite.
The Reilly Room in Atherton Union – Butler University
704 W Hampton Drive, Indianapolis, IN 46208
Directions to Atherton Union – Butler University
Note: Atherton Union is the building with the Butler Bulldog statue at the front entrance plaza.
Details to be announced.
What a great group of missionaries; they planned, they communicated, and implemented a blessed community prayer walk in the Devington neighborhoods.
What a great group of passionate disciples (in training) at Greater Gesthemene joining a movement in changing the spiritual atmosphere in food pantries. Loving God and people is the foundation of Missional Food Pantry. (Mark 12:29-31)
It’s not about food (distribution); it’s about God and People (relationship).
As we build Missional Community, local businesses are being engaged to serve the neighborhoods.
FHL planted the Pantry of Hope in 2010. It is now a part of the community. Merlin had the privilege to pray for 3 dozen people last Saturday. At the end of the pantry, Merlin received a prayer note from one of the families that we served. Please join us in praying for the family.
People hunger for more than food. FHL launched the 3rd Missional Food Pantry this year at Nu Corinthian Baptist Church on June 27, 2018. Rebuilding the Village Coalition Missional Food Pantry resulted in 40% of its recipients accepting Jesus Christ as their Savior! (Beyond This Hunger)
As part of the launching of their missional food pantry, FHL Community had a graduation and commissioning of “Rebuilding the Village Coalition” Missional Food Pantry at Nu Corinthian Baptist Church.
I would like to make you aware of FHL’s ANNUAL FUNDRAISER on the evening of Friday, November 20th at Ivy Tech Culinary Center in Indy. Please SAVE the DATE for an inspirational evening to hear more about the vision God has given us and where He is calling us.
Thank you for your continued prayers and support!
God bless you,
North Vineyard Missional Food Pantry. Congratulations on your first year anniversary!
Since its relaunching last year, they had 20 percent of the recipients who accepted the Lord and established a regular monthly Bible Study dedicated for the recipients and their guests. It’s a blessing to see how God uses simple people in expanding His Kingdom here on earth.
FHL Community welcomes our newest Missional Food Pantry Network member, UPUI’s Paw’s Pantry.
We also had a great interview with Shaina Lawrence, the Director of Paw’s Pantry on the IUPUI campus. They are setting the bar higher in every aspect of Pantry operations.
Welcome to the new and improved FHL Community website! We’ve redesigned everything to make it easier to find out what FHL is doing in your community and how you can become involved. Below is a brief site map to help you get around.
The What We Do Page is a page for you to share with colleagues and friends to let them know, briefly and simply, what FHL is all about.
The Why We Do It Page is a page for you to share with colleagues and friends to let them know, briefly and simply, our motivation for focusing on food pantry support in Central Indiana.
The Get Involved Page is a page to allow anyone to sign up to volunteer for food pantry support by volunteering at a specific pantry, helping load food from the food bank and deliver it to food pantries or work in the FHL office.
The Get Help Page is a page to allow anyone to request food assistance guidance from FHL. We are positioning our organization to become a leading food pantry information hub for Central Indiana.
The Join Us Panel is a simple and easy way for you to sign up for our FHL newsletter to help keep you up to date on FHL.
The News Page is a page where you can find our latest news.
The Donate Page is a page where you and your collegues and friends can donate to FHL to help support food pantry work in Central Indiana. We have stream-lined the process to make it easier to give any amount you wish. You can even set up recurring donations if you want to do it monthly. Does your employer want to match your donation? We have a new feature for employer matching donations as well as donating in the memory of a loved one as a tribute gift. You can even sign up for our newsletter while you are there.
The Find Us Page is where you can locate and get directions to the various food pantries FHL supports as well as our home office location.
We hope you discover how easy it is to use our new website. It was designed with your needs in mind. If you should ever need assistance with something, please do not hesitate to contact the Webmaster. We’re happy to help.
Very excited to have three new members trained for our team and visiting Pantry teams! Pray for our Missional food pantry for Thursday. God is shifting and moving!
Looking forward to working with the new MFP (Missional Food Pantry) grads from Zion Hope Church in the Devington neighborhood, we’re ready to serve and expand the Kingdom through Missional Food Pantry!
Preliminary preparations for the latest Missional Food Pantry at Indy Vineyard. Next week will be painting, room arrangement/layout and, contacting potential community partners.
This past Thursday, the 11th, at 12:30pm was another milestone for FHL!
To supplement the current Food Pantry Training Program, we added an actual food pantry for experiential training. The public was invited to the Ribbon Cutting for the FHL Training Pantry.
We were so excited to launch this one-of-a-kind Training Pantry. The pantry will be open to serve the public every 2nd Thursday of the month (1pm-1:30pm for the seniors, then 1:30pm-3pm for the public) and the pantry trainees will be involved in serving them as a part of their training.
Opening of the new Community Training Food Pantry here at MLK Center and Prayer Warrior Team. (8.11.16)
Posted by Min Lydia Hislovekeptme Davis on Thursday, August 11, 2016
Through your prayers and continued support, FHL is paving the way to redefine the deeper role of a food pantry in our community. We were glad to see many of you this past Thursday to help us witness a new thing; “See, I am doing a new thing! Now it springs up; do you not perceive it? I am making a way in the wilderness and streams in the wasteland.” – Isaiah 43:19
In addition to all of the storage units for our food pantry training center, a prayer team for training was created as well. Officially, we became Faith Hope and Love’s new food pantry training center with a prayer team. We had a preparation party and prayer launching. Prayer warriors and volunteers are now ready to go!
Ribbon cutting ceremony for food pantry at MLK Center
Posted by Ke’tre Dickens on Thursday, August 11, 2016
Mr. Quik did another Food Collection for FHL. This is their 3rd year in a row! Thank you, Mr. Quik!
Unbeknownst to FHL, Mr Quik surprised us with a food drive! They had an inter-departmental competition to promote the food drive. They had 4 pallets of food that were given to two FHL-incubated food pantries. Praise the Lord!
FHL Missional Food Pantry & Training Center
When: September 8, 2016 @ 1:30 pm – 3:00 pm
Where: Martin Luther King Community Center, 40 W 40th St, Indianapolis, IN 46208, USA
Monthly Missional Food Pantry & Training Classes will be held in the lower level of the Martin Luther King Community Center, 40 West 40th Street, Indianapolis, IN 46208. The Food Pantry is open to the public from 1:30pm to 3:00pm monthly on the 2nd Thursday.
Purpose: Training of food pantries volunteers and staff to show how to serve with missional hearts.
To volunteer: and for more information contact Merlin Gonzales at
Faith Hope and Love Community, Inc. shared Martin Luther King Community – Multi Service Center’s post — at Martin Luther King Community Center.
God is good; 3 projects in 1 day! FHL had more than 30 volunteers from IUPUI who worked on serving the community on
Sat., April 16th. 2016. The pictures below were taken at the MLK Community Center while the volunteers worked on cleaning the surrounding area and assembling the raised garden, one group cleaned the 39th/Graceland neighborhood and the last group helped in one of our missional food pantries. Thanks to our partners: MLK Community Center, Midtown Vineyard Community Church, Lilies of the Valleys Church, IUPUI, a generous local business…
“I can’t wait for next year!“, exclaimed one of the FHL Week volunteers.
I remember in the end of summer 2006 (10 years ago), several people told me that they had such a great experience during FHL Week, they couldn’t wait for the following year. These conversations stuck in my mind!
One day the Lord put it on my heart to provide food for those in need. Soon, I found myself organizing mobile food pantries at parking lots, schools, churches and other community organizations. After a few years, this outreach evolved to become the main focus of FHL – it was birthed out of the mission week.
History repeats itself. After the 2016 FHL Week, many volunteers are taking initiatives to serve continuously. For example, the same soup kitchen clients who cooked for the volunteers at 25th St. Baptist are now planning to do the same in September at Barnes UMC. On Thursday, August 25, several people are coming together at Northwood Christian Church located at 4550 N. College Ave. at 4pm to share stories that happened during last month’s mission week.
Yesterday, a volunteer and I stopped by a local breakfast restaurant after picking up more than $1,400 worth of produce. As we were about to eat, it seemed like God said to give fruits to the customers. In obedience, I handed fruits to a woman waiting for her food. I asked her if she has any prayer request. She shared with me that she needs wisdom for the next stage of her life. After giving produce to three more customers, we handed some to the employees and prayed for one of them. This employee has been anxious about their safety in the neighborhood. We prayed for their protections and that God would change the hearts of the people.
The story above is an example that God provides us opportunities to serve our neighborhoods. I think God is saying to us just to keep our eyes and hearts open and just “do it!”
Outreach is not just something to check on your “To Do List”. It’s not something you have to do but something that you do out of love and compassion to others. What does it mean to you to love others without restrictions or any preconceived plan to change them…just to bring the absolute love of God? – not loving with a purpose but loving unconditionally.
Missions are not something that you schedule for a week (although that’s needed) and then go back to “regular programming”; its something that becomes a part of your regular mode of living. So if “you can’t wait for next year“, you can start right now right where you are because missions is not an event, it’s a lifestyle.
Ministry visits: Manna Center, Gulf Shores, AL. Preview of an interview with Jill and her daughter about the wonderful ministry. It’s about people’s salvation.
Missional food pantries also connect people to other community resources. Zion Hope MBC missions team members were guided through the process as they prepare for missional training in the near future.
A Testimomial from one of our future Missional food pantry prayer leaders:
“I had a WONDERFUL TIME at the missional food pantry on Thursday evening…
I got to witness 3 Salvations, can you believe that?? Two of them were ones that I specifically prayed the prayer of salvation with…I was a little nervous at first Donna; but that all dissipated after a few minutes..God is good and faithful in answering our prayers—on the SPOT!!!
Everyone was open and receptive to receiving prayer. It felt good to get a little “practice” and see how everything works…”
We are turning food pantries where the Great Commandment and the Great Commission are lived out.
If you are running a food pantry, you need to be ready for surprises. Recently, one of the recipients from FHL Missional Food Pantry sent me a letter. What’s inside the envelope astound me…
The power of partnership resulted in “changed life”
Rain (snow) or shine, hot or cold… hope the next load out is not as cold!
The harvest is coming!
Our results from two of the Missional Food Pantries last week: You Feed Them at Barnes UMC had 54 recipients and 15 salvations; Mt. Nebo MBC served 47 with 4 salvations.
The Gospel of Salvation (evangelism), the Gospel the Kingdom (living out our faith on earth as it is in heaven) and training (discipleship) – all in the context
of a Missional food pantry. Below is the monthly report from Indy Vineyard Missional Food Pantry.
Listen below to the testimonial for the Grand Opening of the Feed My Sheep missional food pantry at University UMC on April 10th.
Congratulations to Feed My Sheep Missional Food Pantry at University UMC (who had a previous missional food pantry launch ) and The Father’s Table Missional Food Pantry at Cross Church for their successful launching last week with a total of 11 salvations! God is so good!
A testimonial from Cross Church after they re-opened their pantry as The Father’s Table Missional Food Pantry:
Merlin, Thank you for the encouraging feedback. Our elders discussed the possibility of having… God is moving and working on so many. They are hearing his voice and responding!!!
Kim (Cross Church)
Food for the Soul at Greater Gethsemane MBC is the latest FHL Missional Food Pantry launching in April of this year. They are one of several food pantries who are shifting from traditional to Missional food pantry.
The first launch day of “Food for the Soul” at Greater Gethsemane MBC had 40+ recipients with 8 salvations! So blessed to come alongside to spread the tangible love of Christ in Ransom Place.
On September 16, 2017, FHL presented the Missional Food Pantry model to Zion Hope MBC missions board. They are very excited that there is more to managing a food pantry beyond just handing out food.
Grand Opening of the newest Missional food pantry with 2 salvations and plenty of groceries for recipients!
FHL received a warm welcome from Zion Hope Church for the all-day Missional Food Pantry Training!
Our new sign advertising our missional food pantry and training center. We were able to bless the community (March 9) the 2nd Thursday from 1:30p-3:00p through prayers and food.
Earlier this week, FHL was checking on the progress of a supported food pantry at Light of the World Christian Church.
We had the pleasure of visiting their food pantry – blessing so many people every week.
A reformation of bringing back the ministry in a food pantry is transforming lives starting with the leaders, to the volunteers, to the clients and into the neighborhoods… proclaiming and demonstrating the Gospel and Salvation and the Gospel (Good News) of the Kingdom.
Thank you for your prayers! Check out the fruit of the Faith Hope and Love Missional food pantry today.
FHL has created a new FHL Community affiliated group on Facebook for missional food pantry ministry teams. In the words of FHL Staff member Donna Cherry….
I had this FB page created so we could connect to each other and download information to you. Share revelation and more. We want you to succeed in your pantry. Feel free to ask questions. and share testimonials , pictures , videos from your pantry experiences.
This is a closed group and by invitation only. Please feel to request an invite here.
Watch the latest launch of a missional food pantry!
We still need more volunteers. Sign up now!
Listen as the Pastor of Mt. Nebo shares his thoughts on the effect of missional food pantry training with FHL on their food pantry.
“You feed them” Missional food pantry at Barnes UMC Graduation and Community Awareness was full of faith and great expectations.
It’s going to be another week full of blessings. Tonight, will be Indy Vineyard missional food pantry, tomorrow night will be Greater Gethsemane missional food pantry, Thursday night Barnes United Methodist missional food pantry and on Saturday is Zion Hope community prayer walk. Dozens of families will receive food, numerous people will be discipled and many more individuals will receive Christ in their heart. – Building Missional Communities and expanding the Kingdom of God here on earth. Praise God!
Our recent Missional Discipleship Training Workshop for food pantries took place on February 19 at Barnes United Methodist Church. Want to know what’s going on in food ministries? The “crux” is putting ministry back into food pantries and soup kitchens…
Missional food pantry training is reaching a number of existing food pantries and newer food pantries searching for ways to to give spiritual food to their clients. God has favored FHL Community to speak on the subject “Evangelism at Food Pantries” at the IndyHunger Network Summit this Thursday at Light of the World Christian Church. Merlin Gonzales is one of the Workshop presenters at the 12:25 breakout session.
FHL Community is also expanding its reach with Missional Food Pantry Conferences this summer. Below are just a few of the highlights of what FHL is doing and will be doing this summer.
One missional food pantry early Summer Conference is now in the planning stage. Looking forward to our partnership with Pastor Tim and the Freedom Church in Noblesville, In.
FHL is also finalizing an missional food pantry Conference for Divine Direction Christian Church on E. 46th Street in Indianapolis.
This past week, FHL was at Indy Vineyard Church with some very special volunteers. Meet the newest graduates of FHL Missional Food Pantry Training!
FHL is proud to announce that You Feed Them Missional Food Pantry is graduating this Saturday, March 4th at 1:30pm at the Barnes United Methodist Church. They are inviting the neighborhood stakeholders to share their vision and to invite them to join in serving the community together.
On July 19th, FHL conducted a Missional food pantry training at Northside New Era Baptist Church in Indianapolis, IN ·
After the Missional Food Pantry training, the Feed My Sheep Food Pantry was prepared to introduce a Prayer Team the following week as part of their outreach. They will also continue to work on intentional discipleship.
“It’s about loving God and loving others.” – Merlin Gonzales, President FHL Community
There will be a special Missional Food Pantry Training session on
reserved only for Greater Gethsemane MBC. For more information about the
Missional Food Pantry Training, contact firstname.lastname@example.org
The FHL Training Pantry was ready for Thursday’s Missional food pantry and on-the-job (OJT) training.
The joy of the Lord is our strength.
Session #2 Missional Food Pantry Training at Nu Corinthian Baptist Church as we prepare to invade our neighborhoods for Christ, we have to identify the giants in the land. (Numbers 13-14)
What a great group of disciples willing to invest their time, talent and treasure to launch their Missional Food Pantry. The night’s teaching was “Spiritual foundation”
FHL’s partnership with Christ MBC in United Northwest Neighborhood in Indianapolis. LISTEN as Yvette shares her testimony.
Another powerful testimonial what people are longing for. You will notice that food was mentioned last. People are hungry for relationships with God and with others.
One of our missional food pantries had a surprise visitor. Listen in as she gives her testimony.
Hollie’s heart-warming story will brighten your day! She was at a discount store, in her words, to use “her last penny” when suddenly she received a call from the FHL Missional Food Pantry Training Ministry Team prayer leader. Watch as Hollie shares her experience.
Mr. Charles is a client of a missional food pantry. The aim of missional food pantries is to see to the client’s spiritual as well as physical sustenance. Listen as Mr. Charles tells about the impact of both the food he needed and the prayer he received: “They help me. I, in turn, help them”
FHL was at Mount Nebo Missionary Baptist Church in Indianapolis, IN this past week where they served more than 50 families and 6 people accepted the Lord!
A talk was given on January 27, 2018 at the Urban Servant Leadership Un-Conference held at Martin University over this past weekend on why reformation is needed in the supplemental food assistance sector.
Merlin Gonzales, Founder and President of FHL Community, a missional food pantry training center and support hub was there to share his vision for Missional Food Pantries. You can view a short clip of the talk here.
Thanks again to Citizens Energy Group for their partnership. Looking forward to an ongoing collaborative efforts to serve our community together. Building Missional Community means extending opportunities to the members of the community.
Highlights from the University UMC Conference: The practical and the spiritual aspects of FHL Community’s Missional Food Pantry Training approach. The goodness and glory of God covered the entire Conference last Saturday!
An aspect of a Missional food pantry is being relational. Beyond providing food and prayers to those in need, missional food pantries schedule follow ups. Although it was rainy, windy and cold, the Indy Vineyard Missional Food Pantry care team members were at their food pantry last night following up with the recipients from the previous week’s pantry. They asked how they’re doing, offered prayers and invited them for family bible study starting in November. This is a demonstration of the Gospel of the Kingdom.
The Missional Food Pantry at Mt Nebo MBC. Volunteers enthusiastically serve the neighborhood.
Great time with the UMC Central District church leaders discussing about Missional food pantry on May 5th.
Three clients came to the missional food pantry at Lirios de los valles Church this past week. They came for food but they received so much more!
This past Saturday was Ministry Advanced training coordinated by Donna ‘Murr’ Cherry. We believe that our team and leaders need to be ministered and upgrade their knowledge by learning from others and from one another.
A busy day yesterday at FHL Community – Food Load Out at Mt Nebo MBC with seven Network members, celebration for the Pastor and the pantry recipients at Shiloh MBC and a wonderful missional food pantry at Indy Vineyard. God is gracious!
Every Wednesday FHL receives:
Missional food pantries empower your communities.
The changing worldview about food pantries. It’s about people. Bill Mayfield, one of FHL prayer ministers, leads a young woman to Christ.
FHL’s recent Table Talk featured learning how we can serve our recipients and volunteers even deeper through “No Cost” benefits (D-SNP) for the dual card holders – Medicare and Medicaid. “Dual Eligible Special Needs Plans (D–SNPs) enroll beneficiaries are entitled to both Medicare (Title XVIII) and Medical Assistance from a State Plan under Title XIX (Medicaid), and offer the opportunity of enhanced benefits by combining those available through Medicare and Medicaid.” (Centers for Medicaid and Medicare Services)
Several pantry recipients have already signed up at different FHL MFP and are now enjoying the benefits. This is another way of providing wrap around services to your pantry recipients. And FHL Table Talks serve to help the community look into and discuss the benefits of a number of existing options for helping our clients.
Ministry visits: Samaritan Center and Gran’s Attic in Mandeville, Louisiana.. These incredible ministries have been serving for 30 years and supported by 24 churches and other local organizations. Thanks to the staff of both organizations for giving FHL Founder, Merlin Gonzales, a tour and for sharing some wisdom in doing ministry. Take away: the food bank (pantry) upholds prayer and changed lives.
Ministry visit in Louisiana: Helping and empowering rather than enabling. We have so much to learn from each other.
Training session conducted by Marvin Reynolds, FHL’s (SFSP) Summer Food Service Program Director. For almost 2 years, FHL provided SFSP at several sites. For more info, please email UJIMA@fhlinternational.org – Beyond This Hunger — at Faith Hope and Love Community, Inc.
Congratulations to Cross Church for completing the FHL Missional Food Pantry Training School. Welcome to FHL Family! Their Grand re-Opening is on Thursday, April 11th at 6pm!
What a team! While Donna ‘Murr’ Cherry did the Final OJT for Cross Church Care Team at Zion Hope, Lydia Davis did the Final Walkthrough at Cross Church in preparation for their Grand Opening on 4/11.
We had a great gathering at the Servant Leaders’ meeting as they prepare for the possible Missional food pantry training.
We are thankful to Marsh Supermarket in downtown Indy for their Annual Food Drive to benefit the clients of the FHL network clients. The drive is going well and will continue until Dec. 17th. Be a part of helping those in need by stopping by Marsh at 227 Wl Michigan St. 46204.
What a blessed night as the local missionaries of Indy Vineyard Missional Food Pantry serve the community (5/15/18). They are quickly building up their network of partners.
FHL had another Kindness Day recently – a day to just be kind with others. This latest outreach was held on September 10th, 2016. Two groups of volunteers from IUPUI assisted FHL at two locations, one group met to organize and clean the FHL warehouse and the other group assisted in a Neighborhood clean up at the Butler-Tarkington area.
We collaborate, we prayed for each other and we provided food for those in need.
We had an FHL ‘Kindness Day’ at the office. Several IUPUI students came to help out for Cesar Chavez Day of Service! They sorted products, assembled rack shelving and cleaned. We now have more space to receive more donations!
It is all about people; not about food. Since the inception of food pantries a few decades ago, we thought the answer to hunger is food. Ironic as it is, in the first world country like the USA, it’s not the lack of food but lack of relationships, knowing who is our neighbor and establishing trust in our neighborhoods. Food pantries are supposed to serve the people not the system. It is about the “end-user” as our technology culture puts it.
Here’s an article that will change the way you see food pantries – Why Ford hired a Furniture Maker as their CEO
UX design thinking – meaning User-Experience is what matters. In other words, we can put more food in food pantries or we can even fill the parking lots with trucks containing free food and the demand will just continue to grow. Why? Because in our intention to help others, our system is actually hurting them. Somehow, we created a system where people saw gaps to abuse it and thought that it’s ok because we continue to do the same system over and over again expecting different results. It seems like we created bigger problems than hunger.
It is time to change our mindset that there are better ways to address hunger beyond giving a bag of food. Instead of putting a Band-Aid on the problem, let’s look at the root causes of hunger and tackle them one at a time while providing “emergency” food assistance.
Thanks to Traders Point Church for sending over thirty high schoolers to assist in the food pantry supply loadout at FHL Community.
If your church is looking for a practical outreach in Indy, please contact info@fhlInternational.org
“Our Traders Point High School Students loved serving! We can’t wait to come back!”
Here’s what we’re working on at FHL. Below are charts of “real” not “assumed” needs of the recipients at the FHL Training Food Pantry.
What if we can map out our neighborhoods to identify those who are in need of other assistance such as education, healthcare, youth activities OR identify those who received the Lord, those who rededicated and those who are already Christians. Armed with consolidated data, we can connect them with available resources and mobilize our church congregations to demonstrate the Gospel of the Kingdom, to be Salt of the Earth, to engage and to involve in meeting the needs their neighbors.
What if we can all work together using our gifts, treasure, time and talent to demonstrate the Kingdom principles by being out in the community and providing practical and spiritual answers to their needs?
Do you know that Paw’s Pantry serves the students, staff and faculty of IUPUI?
Our fridge is stocked full of beautiful produce all thanks to Faith Hope and Love for helping us out with these tasty donations! Stop by until 4 today to grab something fresh!
The Super Service Challenge “is a nationwide movement to transform organizations through service.”
This year, Faith, Hope and Love Community has a number of videos that you can vote for and help us in the challenge to build better teams of service in our community. Just click here and then vote on the videos on our page at Super Service Challenge! It’s that easy.
United Way National day of caring with the IUPUI students who chose to work with Faith Hope and Love. They worked in teams of 6 to clean the streets.
Thank you to one of our donors – many people were blessed this week with this fresh and nutritious produce! Thank you, also, to our volunteers who work tirelessly to serve those in need.
There are countless opportunities to be a part of blessing the community through volunteering. Visit us to get involved!
This final greeting in 2017 shows a family who passes on the good works of the Lord from generation to generation.
Many thanks for the best volunteers – those who supported the FHL October 2016 fundraiser and for those who are still considering supporting the ministry with their financial contributions.
FHL endeavors through the donations of others like you to stock our food pantry and those we support with healthy food. If you wish to donate to FHL in kind, please contact us at 317-372-7222. In future, we will have an online intake for donations in kind for your convenience.
Thank God for sustaining the monthly collaboration of food ministries and other community agencies in addressing hunger holistically. Sharing best practices, challenges, victories and praying for each other. Monday, Sept 10th, FHL celebrated the 3rd year Anniversary of FHL’s Table Talk. at IUPUI, 1100 w 42nd St Indianapolis 46208, the 2nd floor at Krannert Hall at 11am. Our website will soon feature a page dedicated to Table Talks and their upcoming schedule and topics.
The new FHL Community Distribution Center. We are thankful to God and to University UMC – a new FHL missional food pantry partner starting early in 2019 – for allowing us to use their facility.
One of the reasons why FHL is introducing Beyond This Hunger program…it’s not about food (or money); it’s about people.
“Money can alleviate the harsh conditions of poverty, but unless it is used to leverage changes in behavior, it will have little lasting effect… Ideally, we need to nudge them toward a different set of behaviors by linking generous governmental assistance to staying in school, delaying childbearing, getting married, and working full-time.” – The Behavioral Aspects of Poverty by Isabel V. Sawhill, brookings.edu
FHL Week 2016 will include helping a local day care in upgrading its surroundings and creating a vegetable garden in the backyard. This 24-hr daycare is a ministry of a couple who have a heart for the children of Central Indiana. The daycare is located in a neighborhood that is high on the list of socially deteriorating areas in Indianapolis.
Since 2005, every other year we celebrate one of the words of “Faith Hope and Love” – the year of Faith, the year of Hope and the year of Love. So for the 12th year of the Annual celebration of backyard missions, we are celebrating Love. As stated in Ephesians 2:10:
“For we are God’s handiwork, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do.”
Although we planned and worked hard to put together projects and outreaches, they were already in God’s plan – even before we were born.
In the final weeks of this year’s FHL Week preparation, we found that the projects are in line with bringing the love of God to the neighborhoods. For example:
The $50 Challenge
This idea was inspired by a documentary about 2 young American men who went to Guatemala. They wanted to experience living there for several weeks on a dollar a day – the standard cost of living in a rural village. As soon as they got there, they tried to connect with the locals to learn from them how to live on just a dollar a day. They immediately planted vegetables, learned the way of living and ways to stretch every penny. After several days, they got sick and after several weeks, they lost a lot of weight. In the end, they appreciated what they have in the US but most especially, they experienced what it felt to live like many people around the world (and thousands of people in the US) with very little money or resources.
I thought why not offer a seed money of $50 to the best 5 projects that can multiply it and engage the local community to serve. The main aim is to encourage the groups to be resourceful and engage and involve the local community in solving the hunger issues in our city.
Our first entry happened July 13. The leader of the feeding ministry of Barnes UMC celebrated her birthday by celebrating every clients’ birthday today, no matter when their birthday may be. She decorated the dining room with balloons and special table cloth. Many volunteers provided delicious food, keepsakes and a large birthday cake for everyone!
Another FHL Week Challenge Project is also very creative. As part of a soup kitchen, clients will be cooking for the volunteers on July 28th. This means that clients will be going around the community to find donations to cook a delicious meal for the volunteers. They are planning to make it really special to show their appreciation for the volunteers!
For more information about the FHL $50 Challenge or the FHL Week Sponsorship Challenge
A vision to help one another extended to neighborhood associations helping other neighborhood associations. Some of the projects and outreaches are:
All of this year’s projects are propelled by love. God has already established and decreed these things to transpire.
Some special things are happening during FHL Week 2016. I know God is pleased to see unity through the practical application of the Kingdom. I may be looking too deep into the occasion. Perhaps throughout the years, it became part of me – a backyard mission to serve one another unconditionally, not an event but a lifestyle of Love just as our Lord had shown us some 2000 years ago.
Here is a complete list of projects and outreaches for the FHL Week 2016 (July 24-30).
FHL Week started with outreaches and we’re still doing it. Several children from UJIMA Summer Camp bagged lunches yesterday and gave them to those in need. #BeyondThisHunger
12 years ago, who would have thought… A testimony of what God can do through willing people!
Congratulations to the winners of the FHL Week 2017 Challenge! Here are some of the winners: Shiloh MBC Missional Food Pantry, You Feed Them Missional Food Pantry, UJIMA Community Services and IUPUI Paw’s Pantry. Their innovative ideas could change the image of food pantries and food ministries in Indianapolis and beyond.
FHL Week 2017 will be held this year from July 23-July 29. It is a week of projects and services for and by the local community. It is about activities that touch the lives of our neighbors. In a sense, it’s creating a missional community and supporting missional food pantry training. FHL seeks to engage the community in making our neighborhoods a better place to live in simple cooperative ways that involve sharing one of the basic human needs – food.
This year, similar to last year, we offer a challenge to organizations, groups and individuals to come up with food-related projects that will have an impact on your local community. The best 7 ideas will be awarded $100 seed money to help complete your project. A grand prize of $500 will be given to the best project. You can submit your project ideas and enter the FHL Week 2017 Challenge here.
What kind of projects for FHL Week are we looking for? You can visit our FHL Week site and read about the many projects from last year to get some inspiration for your idea.
Listen in to Merlin’s interview about FHL Week 2017 Challenge where your team can win $600 for your food-related community project this coming Monday, June 19, 6:10AM on 97.9 FM. Thank you Moody Radio!
The winners of the FHL Challenge were announced at the Table Talk and Missional Food Pantry last week:
One of the winners of the 2017 Challenge: Barnes UMC, partnered with Christ UMC to bring unity and to serve those in need.
The residents of Hope Indianapolis at Hawthorne Place Apartments got together and decided to make a change for their community and address the food insecurity some were experiencing. As a result, Hope Indianapolis Food Pantry opened for the apartment residents during FHL Week 2016 providing hope to those who are in need. Hawthorne Place had been operating a food pantry for some time with Faith, Hope and Love as a sponsor.
Merlin spoke with some of the potential clients and the women running this new food pantry about what they think this food pantry will mean for their community.
It was an exciting step forward for this community as its members worked together to make it happen and FHL was there to support them. Merlin also spoke with a volunteer from the original Hawthorne Place food pantry to get her perspective on the changes they have experienced.
Our first entry happened July 13. The leader of the feeding ministry of Barnes UMC celebrated her birthday by celebrating every clients’ birthday today, no matter when their birthday may be. She decorated the dining room with balloons and special table cloth. Many volunteers provided delicious food, keepsakes and a large birthday cake for everyone!
For more information about the FHL $50 Challenge or the FHL Week Sponsorship Challenge
In the past, FHL strives to bring the different denominations to work together. This year, FHL will focus on bringing the 4 contiguous neighborhoods in Indy – Meridian-Kessler, Butler-Tarkington, Crown Hill and the United Northwest neighborhoods.
There will be outreaches, projects and services all around these neighborhoods for this year’s FHL Week which will be from July 24th-30th.
There are already several projects in the planning stage and more will come. You are invited to join and witness the convergence of 4 neighborhoods in Indy. Contact Merlin at email@example.com for more info.
FHL Week is about a week of faith-based outreaches in the Indianapolis area. But that doesn’t stop volunteers from outside Indianapolis from coming to help and being blessed by God for so doing.
This past week a group of young volunteers from Evangelical Community Church in Bloomington , IN came in their van with their youth pastor, Rob Girvin to help out with the FHL Warehouse stocking shelves, lifting refrigeration units and doing general clean up both inside and out. Before coming down to Indianapolis, the group stopped by the home of a local disabled woman who works from home and blessed her with some groceries that the children had donated.
Listen as Merlin talks with this youth group about how volunteering with FHL to help others has blessed them
Merlin spoke with one of the winners of the FHL $50 Challenge at the 25th Street Baptist Church on 525 W. 25th. during FHL Week 2016: a group of clients from a soup kitchen.
The 25th Street Food Ministry serves a group of very appreciative clients with a community soup kitchen (what is called a “reverse soup kitchen”) and they in turn wanted to give back to the volunteers who serve them. So they put together a meal prepared by a working chef who volunteered his time.
Listen as Merlin interviews the clients of a very special soup kitchen in Indianapolis, 46208
One of FHL’s Staff received a kind gift marking FHL Week 2016 this year. It’s a beautifully worked cut glass picture celebrating Faith Hope and Love!
Thrivent Financial Associates is really getting into the spirit of FHL Week 2016 and is reaching out to support the Indianapolis community with volunteers, seed money and an advertising plan for an outreach.
If you are a business (or organization) in the Indianapolis area, won’t you consider joining Thrivent Financial and create your own outreach? All it takes is:
Do It and download the form. Fill it out and mail it to FHL.
To celebrate the 12th Annual FHL Week, Faith Hope and Love Community is giving away $50 each to 5 food pantries in the 46208 zip code area and the surrounding neighborhoods as seed money to improve their pantry site, serve the clients better, food drive, etc. you name it! Only 5 will be selected based on the creativeness of the project. Simple fill out the Project Proposal Form. It’s designed to help you to think creatively and specifically about what kind of outreach you will start with $50 of seed money.
Each participant will fill out a form to provide detailed information on your creative pantry project.
The deadline to submit the completed form is July 18th
Email the form to firstname.lastname@example.org or snail mail/hand-deliver to Merlin at:
MLK Community Center (care of FHL Community)
40 W. 40th St.
Indianapolis, IN., 46208
The key to this fun-filled project is collaboration, partnership and engagement of the community. Please call Merlin at 317-572-5793 for any questions or for any assistance in putting your project together.
Earlier this week, several of FHL board members worked hard to help clear the FHL Warehouse. We will be moving out of the current warehouse soon. We have a partner who will be providing a temporary warehousing space. But we still need a permanent warehouse location. Our Warehouse helps facilitate movement of food to our supported pantries.
Please pray for a permanent donated space before July 22nd. Also, please consider joining us in our move on July 22nd starting at 8am. God is great!
“Can a mother forget the baby at her breast and have no compassion on the child she has borne?
Though she may forget,
I will not forget you!
See, I have engraved you on the palms of my hands;
your walls are ever before me.” – (Isaiah 49:15-16 NIV)
“I got this” is a phrase that has been communicated to us by different persons in the past few weeks. A few years ago, God provided this warehouse space for FHL. We’re headed to our next destination. He is an awesome God!
Most of the move was done July 22. We’re actively waiting on God for our permanent location. Thank you for your prayers.
Last week, the Lord provided a trailer and a box truck! Praise God!
Be a part of blessing our community: continue to pray for FHL for a donated distribution center (warehouse). We are in need of the following: a 10,000 sq ft area with dock and ramp in located in the 46208 or 46205 or 46218 area code. Our goal is to make sure these neighborhoods have a community hub for missional food pantry support.
You have been praying for us! Yesterday, we visited a potential warehouse for the ministry. Please pray for God’s direction as we continue to actively wait for His plan. Next Tuesday will be a serious meeting with the building administrator. We will keep you posted. Thank you for your prayers!
As FHL worked on one of our Load Out Days, working on Missional Community within and without in the neighborhoods, we came closer to finding a permanent warehouse! On September 5, 18 community leaders worked at the FHL parking lot to help distribute the Lord’s blessings to 8 organizations!
Please continue to pray for FHL as we continue to seek and wait for a permanent distribution center.
God gave FHL favor this Sept 19th by withholding the rain just before we started the food allocations. Our team at our tentative distribution center are both resilient and flexible. Seven organizations received the Lord’s provision for the community.
Please continue to pray for us as we actively wait for our permanent distribution center. Ideally, we can serve the community better having a distribution center in 46208, 46218 or 46205 zip code with a ramp and a dock around 10k square feet. Thank you for being a part of community transformation through the Gospel (Good News) of Salvation and the Gospel of the Kingdom (social transformation).
Crown Hill Neighborhood Association was supported by a donation from the FHL Warehouse to help them with their Great Indy Clean-up event.
Volunteers gathered at the FHL Warehouse earlier this week to load up pallets for distribution to the community through missional food pantries. Missional food pantries differ from past food pantry and soup kitchen methods and set up by serving the client both spiritually and physically.
The original backyard mission work continues where its needed most – in service to those in our own communities.
Because of your fervent prayers, the answer came fast! For the next few months starting in October 2017, the FHL Warehouse will be at 2259 N. Ralston Ave. Indianapolis 46218.
Thank you for those who have lent us this space.
18 pallets of nutritious food were distributed to 6 Missional pantries. Praise the Lord for the new donor who started providing frozen meat!
Our special thanks to the youth volunteers of Midwest Academy for helping out.
The last large food distribution at the FHL warehouse at 3131 N Franklin. Our final move to the new distribution center is this coming Saturday at 8pm. Please help us move by calling 317-572-5793
Thank you for your support!
God has provided us an abundance of fresh produce and healthy food today! 7 FHL network food pantries received these blessings and will, in turn, bless their neighbors!
In the past three years over $1,000,000 worth of groceries for the city have been transported by means of this truck.
Unfortunately, in late summer last year this truck had an accident. We have been praying for funds to pay for the repair but up to this point, we have not had sufficient funds to repair it.
So now, we are praying for a replacement truck. We are asking for the truck to be donated. We need a 25-foot truck, with automatic transmission, refrigeration and a lift gate. Please join us in prayer that the Lord will provide so we can in turn serve our neighborhoods better. God bless you.
Recent frozen donations have filled a chest freezer at the FHL Warehouse to the brim. Starting out the year 2017 from an empty freezer to one that is full. Thanks to all who helped make this possible.
Our goal is to put a warehouse schedule together. God provided regular volunteers that collaborated together this past week to help FHL as it grows towards greater distribution of food to those in need. We are currently distributing to eight pantry and soup kitchens. Eight means new beginnings!
We received a donation of a set of brand new portable crowd control barriers. This will help us conduct pantry hours for the warehouse more conveniently for our clients.
FHL also received the following email on behalf of the FHL Food Pantry Warehouse :
“Bless you brother,
Do you need canned goods for your pantry this year? The school is happy to donate. God Bless”
2 Corinthians 9:10-15 Now he who supplies seed to the sower and bread for food will also supply and increase your store of seed and will enlarge the harvest of your righteousness. You will be enriched in every way so that you can be generous on every occasion, and through us your generosity will result in thanksgiving to God. This service that you perform is not only supplying the needs of the Lord’s people but is also overflowing in many expressions of thanks to God. Because of the service by which you have proved yourselves, others will praise God for the obedience that accompanies your confession of the gospel of Christ, and for your generosity in sharing with them and with everyone else. And in their prayers for you their hearts will go out to you, because of the surpassing grace God has given you. Thanks be to God for his indescribable gift!
If you would like to hold a food drive for the food pantries that FHL supports or donate food to the FHL warehouse, stay tuned for details about our upcoming Thanksgiving campaign and food drives throughout the month of December. A future newsletter will let you know how, where and when.
*photo is not an exact representation of the crowd control barrier received
During the week of orientation for new students at IUPUI, WOW – Weeks of Welcome – is held where volunteer opportunities are made known to students. FHL’s IUPUI Interns had fun sharing FHL volunteer opportunities with students at their booth.
These inspired IUPUI volunteers understand the deeper meaning of volunteerism. It’s not just about the task but also about people. Thank you IUPUI for your service to Indianapolis!
Helping people beyond the food… from the perspective of a student.
Recently, volunteers from IUPUI’s Secret Service organization worked on an FHL related project. Listen to several volunteers and their feelings on community involvement.
FHL Community was represented in a booth at the IUPUI School of Social Work Annual Agency Expo. FHL currently has 2 Practicum students from IUPUI and UIndy.
Thanks to Alpha Phi Omega group from IUPUI for cleaning the donated box truck and the surroundings of our office building at the MLK Center.
Three Indy 500 Parade Princesses volunteered at the FHL warehouse this past week. Listen as the speak about their experiences.
To find out more how you can be a part of the different opportunities to serve the community, call 317-572-5793 or email email@example.com
A group of volunteers from Immaculate Heart of Mary Catholic Church organized and cleaned the FHL warehouse. At the same time, the Prayer Team at Barnes UMC was being trained.
Min. Lydia Davis was live at FHL Food Distribution & Pickup.on Friday ·interviewing volunteers for the IUPUI Business Learning Community Day of Service.
A jar full of sour wine was standing there; so they put a sponge full of the sour wine upon a branch of hyssop and brought it up to His mouth. Therefore when Jesus had received the sour wine, He said, “It is finished!” And He bowed His head and gave up His spirit. (John 19:29-30)
The FHL Team wishes you a blessed Good Friday and Easter Sunday.
“So we are Christ’s ambassadors; God is making his appeal through us. We speak for Christ when we plead, ‘Come back to God!”’ (2 Corinthians 5:20 NIV)
A past Thursday Table Talk and Missional food pantry.
The result of several FHL missional food pantry and table talks. Featured were three special speakers. During the missional food pantry we had 2 commitments and at least 4 re-dedications to the Lord! That is why it’s called missional. Making disciples with the step-by-step process: 1) Help clients by giving a witness and offering prayer while they receive food 2)New pantry leaders join us to watch and help volunteer. 3) Sending trained pantry leaders out ready to build prayer teams in their pantries.
The FHL Table Talk (Neighborhood food pantry gathering) was held on December 13th at 11am then later the FHL Missional Training Food Pantry was held at 1:30p. The purpose of the Table Talk this month was “honoring the servants and uplifting the clients physically and spiritually”.
At the November 2017 FHL Table Talk, Pastor Brian Shobe of Shiloh Missionary Baptist Church shared what’s happening in our neighborhoods.
Find out what several churches and organizations are already doing in addressing hunger…
At last week’s Table Talk, we discussed raising our awareness of our strengths and weaknesses and how they help propel or restrict our effectiveness. There were four people who accepted the Lord at Training Pantry that immediately followed the Table Talk. FHL Board member, Eldon Kibbey, helps serve at the FHL Missional Food Pantry Training Center.
Watch a short video explaining how to build missional food pantries in your community
We had great discussions at this month’s April Table Talk. Our missional food pantry partners are growing. And the missional food pantry approach is bearing fruit with clients accepting salvation.
The following photos were taken at our FHL Table Talk meeting and then at the FHL Missional Food Pantry held at our training center. We served 55 families in 2 hours which was an increase this month. Prayer outreach was eagerly accepted by our clients. Leaders who attended the Table Talk beforehand, learned and were eager to use our evangelism survey to share Christ at their own food pantries. Seniors prayed for each other along with our prayer team assistance. More harvesters and laborers are still needed. You can be a part by attending the next Table Talk and by volunteering.
We celebrated the 2nd year anniversary of the 46208 Table Talk with food, prayers, recognition and announced the winner of the 2017 FHL Week Challenge. Most importantly, 7 people received Jesus Christ as their Savior at the FHL Missional Food Pantry.
This month’s Table Talks topic at the Well was the Gospel of the Salvation and Gospel of the Kingdom. Attendees from both local missional food pantries and the ongoing series of Table Talks were there.
.Earlier this week, FHL Table Talk was launched at Martindale Brightwood Community Development Corporation. FHL was warmly welcomed by the community leaders.
Indiana Minority Health Coalition shared insights in health in connection with addressing hunger and a wonderful God-story from Zion Hope #MFP
Table Talk discussions about strategies food pantries can integrate into its services.
Next Table Talk is Sept. 13 at the FHL Community Office.
Great to have Noel Castellanos at the FHL Staff meeting this past Monday. He reinforced the mission of FHL by sharing the mission of CCDA. It’s not about food; it’s about people. It’s about outcome, not output.
“Identity” was the topic at the FHL Staff Kick Off Dinner over the past weekend!
It was a Celebration day this week at the FHL office: One of our IUPUI Interns, Tiffany, and a Office Trainee, Ella, were treated to a lunch for their services to FHL. While their service time with FHL has come to an end, they were reassigned to their next service organizations.
FHL also took the time to celebrate another FHL staff volunteer, Charlotte’s birthday. God bless!
This past weekend at the Urban Servant Leadership Un-Conference, Merlin Gonzales, Founder andPresident of FHL Community had the honor to be the Keynote Speaker and a workshop facilitator at this event focusing on urban leadership.
Thanks to #uniteforchange for their work in the community and for putting this wonderful event.
On October 4, FHL sent out the following prayer request: A trucking company who would partner with FHL to pick up donations from Midwest Food Bank every 1st and 3rd Tuesdays. The partner would provide a driver, a 25 foot box truck (and fuel) with a lift gate. This is a part of creating a missional community where the residents and organizations are engaged in providing food for those in need.
As we continue to create missional community, please continue to pray for a local distribution center for the community preferably with dock and ramp in 46208, 46205 or 46218 zip codes around 10,000+ sq.ft.
Early last week, FHL Founder and President, Merlin Gonzales attended partnership outreach meetings with Martindale-Brightwood CDC, Golden Age and Edna Martin Food Pantry.
Thank you to our partners, Sodrel Truck Lines and Kroger! May the Lord bless you abundantly!
FHL is looking forward to a great donor/partnership with IPS Rousseau McClellan Montessori School 91 starting on September 12 of this year. We wish to thank Food Rescue for their important work connecting FHL with Pike High School and now, IPS School 91.
Thanks to our new community partner, Indy Urban Acres, for providing 500 lbs of freshly picked produce. Every week, FHL will be receiving hundreds of pounds of fresh produce from them. More healthy food for our missional food pantries.
Wonderful visit at Elder W Diggs School 42 with Ignite Achievement Academy to explore opportunities to work together in the 46208 neighborhood.
Recently, one of FHL’s Food Pantry Partners held their annual food drive and had this to say:
Serving the community is very important to the Mister Quik Team Members, so we try to find a way to help out Indianapolis once a month. This month, MQ Team Members worked together to gather food donations to help out Faith Hope and Love Community, Inc. The food donations will go to food pantries around Indianapolis to help families in need. We’d like to thank Faith Hope and Love Community, Inc. for giving us this opportunity!
Watch Mr. Quick’s recent video about this food drive.
Another practical way to build Missional Community. Throughout the years, FHL has been in partnership with Mr. Quik Home Services to help those in need in our neighborhoods. Thank you Mr. Quik!
The Northwest Quality of Life leaders’ retreat at Marian University involving residents and stakeholders. FHL Community is honored to be Co-Chair for the Food Access and a member of the Governance body.
Tackling hunger holistically means knowing your neighbors and working with those who are passionate in transforming the community.
The first load out at our new community partner, Leadership and Legacy Campus! Five pantries received an abundance of groceries.
“You do great work and the state speaks very highly of you guys.” – Liz commenting on one of FHL ministries, UJIMA Community Services. Ujima ministry serves At Risk, After School and supports a Summer Feeding program.
Meet me Under the Bridge is a homeless ministry recently partnered with FHL.
Our ministry FHL Community was honored as one of the partners at the Grand ReOpening of Paw’s Pantry in IUPUI. Paw’s pantry is one of FHL Network of pantries. Thanks to the IUPUI Leaders (including Chancellor Nasser Paydar) for the partnership. FHL will also be recognized for the 50th year anniversary of IUPUI.
Eating 4 Life Conference is presented by Northwest Quality of Life and Flanner House. The conference will feature workshops such as Beyond this Hunger (by Faith Hope and Love), Mindful and Emotional Healing, Diabetes and Cholesterol Screening, Pre-diabetes prevention…
The conference will take place:
Saturday August 25, 2018, 9AM-4 PM
Flanner House 2424 Martin Luther King Jr. Street,
Indianapolis, IN 46208
For more info and to Register for workshops, Contact: Rachel Lewis at Rlewis@flannerhouse.org 317.925.4231 or sign up online here.
This past October 22 Table Talk featured guest speaker, Ann Hartman, the CEO of Connect 2 Help 211. There are many benefits to the community, agencies and ultimately to the neighborhoods if we work even closer together.
A very special thanks to all our supporters!
The “Food for the Soul Missional Food Pantry” missionaries at Greater Gethsemane Missionary Baptist Church did very well for their Community Prayer Walk this past week. They prayed for the neighborhood and the businesses. Great planning and mapping out their mission field!
Thank you to Senior Life Transitions for a food drive to benefit the FHL Network of Missional Food Pantries.
Thanks to one of FHL Community’s partners, Indy Urban Acres, for some veggie plants! Their fundraising sale is still going. Support food pantries by purchasing vegetables and flowering plants.
FHL seeks to assist organizations in the 46208 area of Central Indiana in community empowerment partnerships. This week with feature: NO BOBS. Listen below to their testimony.
The following film shows a heroin addict’s prayer of repentance at a soup kitchen. Twenty people also received Jesus Christ in their heart at another food pantry!
There are no coincidences when there are God experiences to be had. Thank you to all that helped bless this single father and his 7 month old daughter, LJ.
He was seeking utility assistance on a day the new FHL Missional Food Pantry was open (every 2nd Thursday of the month from 1:30p-3p ) . Our Registration process includeed following up with a call to check in (relationship-building) and seeking prayer requests (ministry). He shared his needs for his daughter with our Prayer Team Leader, who in turn spoke to me about those needs, asking if my ministry could help. What happened next was God showing his blessing on all. After blessing them with the physical gifts, the opportunity allowed Donna and I to minister with spiritual gifts. A special thank you to all those tagged! Including 2 aren’t tagged!
To God be the Glory! We served 53 (10 were first time visitors) with an average of 10 bags of groceries each, that’s 152 lives touched with 530 bags of groceries!! There were 8 Salvations! 1 Baptism! 1 Deliverance! 1 Re-Dedication, and 1 Healing! We had 22 phenomenal Volunteers! Thank You to our partner Second Helpings for the 100 Awesome variety of Sandwiches, our guests loved them! Also, Thank You to our two Vendors that came to sign up clients to help them: Anthem Blue Cross Blue Shield and Oak Street Health.
Blessed Day At Our Missional Food Pantry on Sat.We Touch 134 Lives,One Salvation,Pass Out 350 Bags Of Food. Unto Him🙏
Another amazing night – Neighborhood to neighborhood, last night was in the Northwest Indy. Below are testimonials and pictures of the actual God moment. Hallelujah! The volunteers here at “Rebuilding The Village” Missional Food Pantry at #NUCBC are still just as compassionate and determined to serve their Community physically and spiritually as they were when we, #FHLIndy, first trained them for this ministry. HALLELUH! 🕊😇 At the end of each MFP night, they ALL come together to share God’s glory through the night and close in prayer. One return guest’s testimony was that she got a job! Amen! 💜 (2.27.19) Their #MFP is every 4th Wednesday, 6-7:30pm.
It’s amazing how a simple “Missional” food pantry could change the spiritual atmosphere of a neighborhood. To find out more about this simple but powerful ministry that is invading our neighborhoods, contact firstname.lastname@example.org or call 317-975-1709 or 317-572-5793
Great great day at the FHL Missional food pantry with several healings and more salvations! The seniors were given carnations for Valentine’s day. I am privileged to be able to do a time of encouragement before the pantry with them. Table Talks went awesome also.
Only through God’s grace that we’re are entrusted to be a part of His ministry. The multiplication of Missional Food Pantries continues #FHLIndy as we are preparing to hold conferences and train 2 churches next week 2-16 and on 3/2.
FHL Missional Ministry team – Care team — Donna Cherry with Tony Speziale, Bill Mayfield and Shauna Humphrey.
You are invited to the FHL Kindness Day “Heal the Land Cleanup” with IUPUI students on Saturday, October 29, 2016, 10:30 am to 12:30 pm. The the flyer below contain details about the cleanup, including what to bring to the cleanup. The meeting site is at:
We ask that all who plan to participate in the cleanup print, sign and bring a copy of the Waiver/Registration Form (download) with them.
The minimum age for those participating in the cleanup is twelve, unless prior approval is obtained from this writer before the cleanup. Special planning needs to be done to protect young children.
Shorten the Line, the FHL October 2016 Fundraiser was an event enjoyed by all those who attended. Many blessed Faith Hope and Love at the fundraiser to invest back into the community. Below are some of the highlights from the night in both video and photos.
The benefits of FHL table talks. Listen to be inspired.
Wrap up, Prayer by the Founder/CEO Pastor Merlin Gonzales….
FHL wishes to thank the donor of our new carts and shelves. This has been a blessing to 4 missional food pantries this month.
Thank you to FHL friends and partners, LithoPress and Indianapolis Fruit! You’re blessings to the city! – Merlin Gonzales, Founder, FHL Community
LithoPress has been a long time partner and supporter of FHL Community. FHL has often had the use of their 24-footer truck to transport food for pantry use. We thank LithoPress and Vice President, Bernie Lacey, for their generosity in helping support missional food pantries in Central Indiana.
Indianapolis Fruit is a distributor of fruits, vegetables and floral for the city of Indianapolis and they also have contributed to our missional food pantries. Indianapolis Fruit has a long record of supporting community outreaches in our city and FHL appreciates their friendship. Thank you for all you do!
On mission together to alleviate hunger in our neighborhoods.
Through God’s blessing, we completed the training at Mt. Nebo MBC! So proud of them for the preparation for the training and for renovating the place for their food pantry.
I was blessed to see the growth of a ministry that FHL incubated just a few years ago! They have kept the vision alive reaching out for Christ through food pantry. So proud of the founders, Don and Christina Stilts. As I visit them today, FHL received dozens of cases of drinks! – Merlin Gonzales
This past October 27 Min Lydia Davis with Takia Harrow met at Hawthorne Place to see and share my insight at Hope Indianapolis, a new residential community Food Pantry incubated by Faith Hope and Love.
Harvest time this Thursday at the FHL Food Pantry Training Center. We received both perishable and non perishables from our partners!
FHL wishes to thank one of our corporate partners for the fresh, delicious and healthy donations we received for one of the food pantries we support.
FHL Community is honored to receive the Spirit of Philanthropy Award in April! Your prayers and support are propelling us in accomplishing our mission. God bless!
Earlier this week, Barnes United Methodist Church sent a message out to Vineyard Community Church and Faith Hope and Love Community, Inc. for the donation to their Clothing Ministry and their Community. They are extremely grateful for the support. And FHL is glad for the opportunity to build relationships while serving the community. But here, let’s let Barnes United Methodist tell you in their own words.
On Thursday August 3rd, FHL did an orientation for HealthNet Social Workers regarding the emergence of Missional food pantries in Indianapolis and how this model could help their patients.
In 2018, FHL trained and incubated 3 more Missional Food Pantries.
Through the 7 FHL Network of Missional Food Pantries:
• 257 SALVATIONS; 9 BAPTISMS
• approximately prayed for 5000+ people
• 1179+ unique families were served
• 14,400+ bags of groceries were given
In February and March, two churches will be trained to open a missional food pantry.
On behalf of FHL leaders, staff, advocates and volunteers, I thank God for your prayers, encouragement and contribution. The food insecure are being fed, more volunteers are being mobilized and more people are walking from food pantries beyond just bags of food. The measurement of our success is not in terms of how many people we served, although that’s important, but how many
lives were changed.
Once again, thank you for your continued prayers and support.
Angela Perry at the Praise and Worship Center at 38th and Franklin partnering with Faith, Hope and Love addressing hunger in the area together.
Visited our new partner, Indy Urban Acres – A project of the Indianapolis Parks Foundation,in providing healthy vegetables for the city. Great people, great cause.
What’s the difference about this cook out? Neighbors praying for one another.
As we consider our need for a new warehouse, we ask that you keep FHL in prayer. FHL will move its current warehouse operation closer to the pantries that we serve (46208, 46205 and 46218). This move will help many smaller pantries reduce transportation costs while allowing FHL to expand its support.
Earlier this week, Founder, Merlin Gonzales, met with some possible donors. Discussions have advanced and another meeting is scheduled for next week.
We thank you for your continued prayers and support. Lord willing, we will be provided with a new warehouse by our target date of July. If you have a warehouse that you are willing to donate, you may contact us through Meet The Need.
UPDATE 6/1/2017: We are still waiting for the decision of one of our potential partners. Meanwhile, one business in Martindale-Brightwood offered us the temporary use of a space in his warehouse. Thank you for your continued prayers!
The new FHL Community office is shaping up. We are still at the same building at 1100 W 42nd St. Indianapolis, In 46208 but our Suite number is now is 365. Please come and visit us to see the rest of our offices.
We are now located at the North side of the Indiana Interchurch Center.
FHL’s new offices is starting to shape up! We’ll have more information for you soon. Thank you for your continued prayers and support.
Recently, FHL was really interviewed on “Conversations in Focus” live on the Vision Stream Network. Merlin spoke about FHL Community and its work with churches and backyard missions.
MKNA Mission Week Meeting with other community leaders joining, coached and brought together by Merlin Gonzales of Faith Hope and Love Community. We are exploring opportunities to serve TOGETHER to see God’s presence in the multiple neighborhoods represented during FHL week July 24rd -July 31st — at Midtown Vineyard Community Church.
FHL Community Table Talk #16 was held on January 16, 2017. The theme for this month was: “Learning How To Do Our Work”. Topic concerned was “Wrap Around Services”
At the FHL Community regular load out. So blessed to work with teams of volunteers from University United Methodist Church who are giving of their time, talent and treasure to help those in need.
Load Out Day is the day where FHL helps get pallets of food ready for participating missional food pantries. If your church is looking for a practical outreach in Indy, please contact info@fhlInternational.org or get your group involved by signing up on our volunteer intake page
What have previous volunteer groups said about their experience?
“Our Traders Point High School Students loved serving! We can’t wait to come back!”
If you are looking for summer and spring projects for your church group, organization or students, please consider FHL community.
Blessed are the pure in heart,
For they shall see God. – Matthew 5:8
Please pray for our city and nation along with FHL and the hundreds of people who attended the Indianapolis Prayer Breakfast at Indiana Roof Ballroom.
Every year on MLK Day, IUPUI students volunteer to help FHL Community. This year, about 30 students helped clean and organize the new FHL Training Center and Warehouse. Afterwards, they reflected about their experience and how it relates to social change – the very thing that FHL endeavors to do: transform neighborhoods and people.
This month’s Table Talk (#12 ) started at 11am. We discussed different ways of gathering information about the clients attending our food pantries. Then we considered the importance of evaluating the information we gather, turning what we learn into metrics for our potential donors to consider and using best practices in record keeping.
Afterwards, we opened the FHL Food Pantry to the public at 1:30 and finished at 3:00pm. Another full day for FHL Community.
The monthly FHL Table Talk was attended by 6 out of the 15 current operating food pantries/soup kitchens in 46208 and surrounding neighborhoods. We had a great discussion about the need for change to serve our neighborhoods even better.
Contact FHL today so you can participate in the next table talk.
FHL strives to bring different denominations to work together. This year, FHL will focus on bringing 4 contiguous neighborhoods in Indy – Meridian-Kessler, Butler-Tarkington, Crown Hill and the United Northwest neighborhoods.
There will be outreaches, projects and services all around these neighborhoods for this year’s FHL Week which will be on July 24th-30th.
There are already several projects in the planning stage and more will come. You are invited to join and witness the convergence of 4 neighborhoods in Indy. Contact Merlin at email@example.com for more info.
We hope you can join us this Thursday at 12pm for this month’s table talk. We are so excited to have John Whitaker, Executive Director for Midwest Food Bank as our guest speaker.
FHL will be providing lunch. We will start at noon and end at 1:30pm.
Don’t forget to bring one of your volunteer or leaders!
We are looking forward to having you there!
Contact FHL today so you can participate in the next table talk.
“I had the privilege of meeting co-founder Joe Spaulding when Paw’s Pantry was getting ready to open in 2013. A few years later, Faith Hope and Love began providing fresh produce and other nonperishable food items to Paw’s Pantry,” said Gonzales….Merlin Gonzales and Faith Hope and Love are valuable partners in this vitally important effort to improve the lives for faculty, staff, and students on our campus and for people in the city that we call home.” – Faces of IUPUI: 50 year Anniversary
An example of sharing the Gospel by the disciples who were trained a month ago. The result, simultaneous salvations! Hallelujah!
We’re changing our focus of operations to the 46208 area! We will also be moving our office of operations there as well.
KNA/BTNA ( communities midtown surrounding area ) meeting on conceptualizing different projects for Faith Hope and Love Week. It’s coming together! Merlin shared his project to teach simple evangelism and then outreach! Different positions were explored for each person to create on their team. We had community leaders, police officers, a librarian, a Red Cross representative, and pastors representing churches. FHL believes every Christian needs to learn how to bring others to Christ. Merlin will be assisting with this group to help them press into God’s Kingdom to advance in this area.
God is putting teams together in different ways to reach out to neighborhood associations, government, churches and businesses.
Contact FHL if you or a church group wants to plan a project for FHL Week 2016
The final classroom session at Greater Gethsemane MBC was attended by many disciples in spite of a wintry spring morning. Don’t ask for miracle; be the miracle as we obey and surrender to Christ.
This coming Saturday starting at 10am is Community Walk and Graduation!
FHL Community was honored at the Grand Opening of the new Kroger super store at 227 W Michigan St., Indianapolis as the store’s community partner.
Thank you Kroger!
As a part of Food Pantry Training, FHL will be opening a food pantry which will operate once a month. FHL will train a food ministry volunteer about what will be involved in the operations of an actual food pantry to help them gain experience.
If you would like to help, we need the following:
Thanks to College Park 20something group for helping us organize and clean the FHL warehouse!