For anyone wondering what more than 5 tons of Oreo cookies looks like, ask the congregation of the Alpharetta First United Methodist Church.
With strong community support, Alpharetta First UMC collected 5.64 tons of Oreos for U.S. service members stationed in the Middle East. It was a record number for the church, which has conducted “Operation Oreo” every summer since 2009. This year’s goal was 4 tons of cookies, but a strong outpouring of support from local businesses, churches and individuals pushed the final cookie count well past the original target.
“The community and Alpharetta Methodist are to be applauded for their generous gift to the troops in the Middle East,” said Senior Pastor Dr. Don Martin. “These Oreos are a sweet and tangible sign of our love and support for the brave men and women who serve in a dangerous land. May God protect them until they come home to a grateful nation.”
The Oreos were shipped to chaplains in Afghanistan, Iraq and Kuwait, who will distribute them to men and women stationed at outposts in those countries. Alpharetta Methodist also sent some of the Oreos to service members aboard two floating medical treatment facilities, the USNS Comfort, stationed in the waters of the Middle East, and the USNS Mercy, currently in the Pacific Ocean.
The church asked its congregation and the community to donate Oreos throughout the month of June. The cookie drive culminated with patriotic worship services on Sunday, June 28. Stacks of Oreo packages surrounded the altar, while the choir and orchestra played patriotic music and military veterans were recognized.
The Abiding in the Vine Sunday School class packed the Oreos for shipment. Two members of the class, Gordon Barber and Mike Rademacher, spent many months coordinating the project and working with the military to identify units to receive the cookies.
“This has been a tremendous team effort. The generosity of the community has been overwhelming while the volunteerism shown is unparalleled,” said Barber.
Click here to read more.
SOURCE: Appen Media Group