Category Archives: The Neighborhood Table

The Neighborhood Table

Our next GPC mission service event at the Neighborhood Table will be held on Thursday, December 9 from 5:30 to 6:30 PM.

The Neighborhood Table, founded and organized as a part of the Roots of Faith Ministry, is a free community dinner in Sharpsburg. It is not a soup kitchen or a handout, but a place for the Sharpsburg community to gather to support, encourage, and serve one another in the name of Jesus Christ. GPC members serve dinners there to approximately 100-150 people on the second Thursday of every month.

Through participating in this ministry, GPC members have been greeting, meeting, serving, and eating with the Sharpsburg community, and have had the opportunity to get to know our neighbors, their families, and their stories.

How can you help? Consider the following opportunities:

  • Volunteering as a server – We meet at Roots of Faith Ministry for the Neighborhood Table in Sharpsburg (800 Main Street, Sharpsburg, PA 15215) at 5:30 PM and leave at 7:15 PM. We need about 12 to 16 people each month to help with the dinner. Parents, this is one of a handful of organizations that will allow children to serve others. We welcome all – sign up in the narthex or contact Duane McDonough if you can help greet, meet, serve, and eat with our neighbors in Sharpsburg.
  • Donating Giant Eagle gift cards to help defray the cost of meals for the Neighborhood Table. One $25 Giant Eagle gift card feeds 10 people … that’s right … 10 people … PLUS you get to keep the Fuel Perks. Place your Giant Eagle gift cards in an envelope marked “Attn: Lois Cridge – The Neighborhood Table” and mail the stamped envelope to the church office or place it in the offering plate. These Giant Eagle gift cards will be considered extra giving and will be included in your GPC year-to-date account statements.

We are thankful for the many people who are working together to help feed hungry people in our local communities. The Giant Eagle Express in Harmarville is excited to be working with GPC in this ministry and to know that their food is helping others. GPC in turn is thankful to our team leaders Duane and Linda McDonough, Diana and Henry Long, Jimmy Martin, our many volunteers, the GPC Deacons and the GPC Mission and Outreach Ministry who gave monetary donations. We are thankful that God is guiding us.

Being a Christian brings with it the duty and the privilege of a lifetime of service. Service allows us to practice doing what Jesus would do. It connects us to those we serve and gives us a kind of satisfaction that self-interest can never offer. It should be motivated by love.

“Learn & Serve” Transitions to “The Neighborhood Table”

We are excited that the next phase of the GPC Learn & Serve program has begun with a transition to The Neighborhood Table in Sharpsburg.

Since Learn & Serve started in February 2015, we have offered our time and talents to six different community organizations. We packed boxes at the Greater Pittsburgh Community Food Bank, painted and gardened at HEARTH and Camp Crestfield, visited with international students at P.R.I.S.M. and cooked and served food at the Hot Metal Bridge and The Neighborhood Table in Sharpsburg. We did many jobs, learned about many programs, shared food and fellowship with many people, and had the privilege of serving others.

Feedback was collected about each of our Learn & Serve experiences. The consensus was that we enjoyed meeting, serving, eating, and interacting with members of our local communities. Therefore, GPC has transitioned from volunteering with various programs through Learn & Serve to volunteering with The Neighborhood Table in the Sharpsburg community.

What is The Neighborhood Table?

The Neighborhood Table is a free community dinner that is held on the first and third Thursday of every month at the Roots of Faith Ministry Center in downtown Sharpsburg. Roots of Faith, an outreach ministry started in January 2014 by the Faith United Methodist Church in Fox Chapel, seeks to gather the Sharpsburg community to support, encourage, and serve one another in the name of Jesus Christ. The Table is not a soup kitchen or a handout, but a place for the community to gather. In addition to The Neighborhood Table, Roots of Faith sponsors vacation Bible school, a neighborhood legal clinic, an evening Bible study and a Friday night youth coffee house.

Transitioning Happens in Two Phases: March and October

Currently, volunteers from the Bakerstown United Presbyterian Church prepare and serve food at The Neighborhood Table on the first Thursday of the month and volunteers from Faith UMC do the same on the third Thursday of the month. Because The Neighborhood Table is expanding and getting a new kitchen in the next several months, they are not ready for GPC to start a third week of preparing and serving meals until October. However, until September, we plan to visit on the first Thursday of the month (with Bakerstown volunteers) to eat, meet, and get to know the Sharpsburg community that attends The Neighborhood Table. When the new kitchen is ready for us in October, we will start preparing and serving meals on the second Thursday of each month.

How can you help?

We can all help – men, women, young, old, single, and married. The life of Jesus Christ makes it clear the duty and privilege we have to serve our brothers and sisters on earth. Service allows us to practice doing what Jesus would do. Join us in serving our brothers and sisters in the nearby neighborhood of Sharpsburg.

Learn & Serve

The Mission and Outreach Committee is pleased to announce a new and exciting community outreach program called Learn & Serve.

I’ve been involved with fundraising to support the youth mission trips for many years. Often people would ask me “Why don’t we do something more locally to help people in our own community?”

Well, we listened to you, we heard you and Learn & Serve is how we all can respond to this important question.

Learn & Serve will support local mission and outreach organizations with our time and talent.

Learn & Serve does not replace the youth mission trips.

Learn & Serve is geared for all members of GPC: young, old, men, women, single, married, working and retired.

Through Learn & Serve, we will go in small groups of volunteers once a month from February through June to support various local organizations. Many of these local organizations are already receiving financial support from the GPC Mission and Outreach budget. These local organizations greatly appreciate our financial support, but they also need our time and talent to support their programs.

When our support is needed varies: weekdays, evenings and weekends. If you are working, I ask you to consider taking a half-day of vacation this year to support Learn & Serve.

There is a Learn & Serve poster board in the church parlor with sign-up sheets showing the various local organizations that need our support. You can also learn more and sign up online as we announce new events on this website.

Roughly 50 volunteers are needed to meet the request from these local organizations. We will have more organizations to support in the fall. Your suggestions for other local organizations to support will be given serious consideration.

We can all help.

Calling yourself a Christian brings with it the duty and the privilege of a lifetime of service. Service allows us to practice doing what Jesus would do. It connects us to those we serve and gives us a kind of satisfaction that self-interest can never offer. Service happens in big ways and small, in public and in private, for friends and for strangers. It should be motivated by love. The life of Jesus Christ makes it clear the duty and privilege we have to serve our brothers and sisters on earth.

Thank you for volunteering your time and talent to help others through Learn & Serve.

Duane McDonough