Prayers pave path for spud suppliers
A city map ensured every home in Gene Autry received a bag of potatoes.
Local church volunteers made their deliveries in town on Sunday afternoon, following the Saturday Potato Drop at Ardmore-First. A youth member prayed for each load.
"Our oldest potato deliverer was in the 70s; our youngest was Allee Hill, who is 3," wrote Katherine McQuistion, church treasurer. "As part of her team, Allee loaded up and anxiously waited for the pickup to stop, for her turn to deliver, with a church flier in hand, a bag of potatoes, and a huge smile.
"There are no words to describe the feeling as our church met back together to share stories . One family drove after one delivery truck to hand them a love offering.
God was so very present to us. If you have thought of being a Potato Drop church, I highly recommend it."
At Ardmore-First UMC, the message is clear during the church’s second annual Potato Drop.
Ardmore 1st produces massive giveaway
For a second time, Ardmore-First UMC coordinated a massive giveaway of 40,000 pounds of potatoes in southern Oklahoma.
Terry Myer, a.k.a. "Terry Tater," reported the mission was undertaken to show the love of Jesus Christ in the community by distributing a truckload of potatoes, provided through the Society of St. Andrew, a national gleaning program to fight hunger. The mission is part of the Faith Promise program at First Church.
"To start, we divided the load in half, with 20,000 pounds going to other United Methodist churches in the area as well as groups that service those in need," Myer said. "The other 20,000 pounds have been distributed to the citizens here in Ardmore by conducting a drive-through giveaway."
On a Saturday in November, the church handed out all those potatoes in less than two hours. Stickers placed on the 10-pound produce bags stated, "We pray God’s blessings upon you. We invite you to be our guest for worship. First United Methodist Church. May God’s face shine upon you (Numbers 6:25)."
Volunteers of all ages participated in the effort. Boy Scouts delivered a pickup load to The Ardmore Village. Nick and Sonya Morris delivered two van loads to people in apartment complexes. Others filled their cars and took the food to shut-ins. Great Plains Rent-All donated the use of a forklift.
Organizations in Ardmore that received potatoes were The Salvation Army, Ardmore Soup Kitchen, Gene Autry Correctional Facility, Children’s Resource Center, Family Shelter, Children of the King Homeless Shelter, and Metropolitan AME Church.
Also participating in Potato Drop 2010 were the churches at Durant, Caddo, Gene Autry, Lone Grove, Kingston-Lighthouse, Ringling, Wilson, and Healdton, as well as the Wesley Foundation at Southeastern Oklahoma State University. Church members also took potatoes to Milo and Marietta.
"The thank-yous and expressions of joy on faces was just exciting to everyone involved," Myer said.
The youngest volunteer from Gene Autry UMC to take part in the Potato Dropmission led by Ardmore-First UMC in southern Oklahoma.