Saddleback Church is Southern California’s Largest Food Provider for Residents in Need Amid Coronavirus Pandemic

Rick and Kay Warren lead Saddleback Church in Lake Forest, California. | YouTube/Saddleback Church

In Southern California’s Orange County, where nearly half a million people are at risk of going hungry each month during the COVID-19 pandemic, Pastor Rick Warren’s Saddleback Church is the largest food resource as the congregation seeks to follow the example of Jesus.

Since the pandemic began in March, the megachurch’s volunteers have distributed more than 2.4 million pounds of food at more than 300 grocery distribution events throughout Orange County, according to The Epoch Times.

“Saddleback has been feeding our community for over 10 years,” Saddleback’s communications minister, Ashley Eure, was quoted as saying. “When COVID hit, we scaled up our distribution to meet the rapidly increasing need. Every Southern California Saddleback campus has contributed to putting on food distributions and caring for the physical and spiritual needs families are facing right now.

“Pastor Rick has said that, as Christians, we are called to step into the places of pain. In a time when the world is scared and hurting, instead of running away from that, we’re going to run towards the pain and meet people where they are.”

Second Harvest Food Bank, Saddleback’s partner in the distribution, says that one in six children in Orange County is at risk of hunger. Those at risk also include seniors with fixed incomes, people with disabilities and the homeless, and the number could be more than 450,000.

The O.C. Food Bank is also a partner of the Saddleback Church in the initiative.

According to the church’s website, the food distribution will carry on in September in Anaheim, Corona, Irvine South, Lake Forest, Laguna Woods, Rancho Capistrano and San Clemente areas.

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SOURCE: Christian Post, Anugrah Kumar