Summer 2023

A Season of Change

By Molly McWhorter
Soup Kitchen Board President

As spring flowers grow into summer and the weather warms, lawnmowers are powered up, gardens are planted, birds are singing, and life is once again in transition.

People smile on the street as the cold, wet days of winter fade into distant memories. Hopeful happiness permeates.

What makes this transition comfortable while others make us squirm? Is it because it is an expected change that we await every year? Or because most of us consider it joyful?

Sitting in my own happiness of spring’s arrival and thinking about the changes happening at St. Barnabas and the Soup Kitchen, I wonder how we approach these transitions with a similar hopeful happiness and joyful expectation.

Over the last few months, the faces in the kitchen changed,
but the meals remained constant and delicious.

Change brings about discomfort, disruption of routine (sometimes), causes additional work (often), causes emotions, expected or not, to surface. Change also frequently arrives with hope – for the new, for the future, for the different.

Many of our Soup Kitchen guests experience change regularly as they navigate their daily life. Sometimes change brings them to a halt, other times it throws them into a new routine and in the evening, it can bring them to the Soup Kitchen table.

Alex Giammonco stepped into the kitchen and embraced the opportunity to create and cook nightly, to meet and nurture guests, returning and new, with food, with a warm heart and a listening ear. His calm, devoted demeanor created steadiness in a time of change.

Our guests embraced this change (and Alex) with smiles and hungry anticipation for his culinary creations.

As we support changes in the kitchen and the new rector’s arrival at St. Barnabas, I encourage you to welcome these transitions and allow all those thoughts and feelings that arise with change, to be comforted by a hopeful happiness and joyful expectation.

New Executive Director views volunteers as the heart of SK

The Rev. Cathy Clark is still getting her feet wet as rector of St. Barnabas. She’s yet to attend her first Soup Kitchen board meeting as of this writing in June. But the former Michigander from the Upper Peninsula not only believes heartily in the mission of the Soup Kitchen and understands at the heart of the organization’s 33-years of success are its volunteers.

The Rev. Cathy Clark and Lyn Giammanco enjoy a moment during a Friday evening at the Soup Kitchen.

“They’re the ones who make a difference in terms of meal preparation; in terms of serving our guests; in terms of keeping the Soup Kitchen running day in and day out,” she said.

Clark finds joy in the service to guests and is impressed by the diverse backgrounds of volunteers.

She sees in the vibrant community of volunteers a strong sense of giving back to the community and notes,” I look forward to the soup Kitchen continuing  to serve people in Yamhill County and my becoming a part of this wonderful ministry of service.”

Clark’s background is well suited to working with soup Kitchen board members and volunteers. Prior to her ordination she was an elementary and middle school teacher. She also worked in the field as a project manager for a construction company.

“I feel really blessed and thankful to be at a vibrant
and vital congregation like St. Barnabas.”

Upon graduation from episcopal divinity school in Cambridge, Massachusetts, she spent seven years as a ministry developer in her diocese in the Upper Peninsula in which she served as a priests, teacher, mentor, and consultant to rural congregations.

She adds, “I feel really blessed and thankful to be at a vibrant and vital congregation like St. Barnabas.”

Your monthly pledge nourishes our guests

The warm comfort of a delicious meal, the buzz of catching up with friends and the humanity of being a guest at a non-judgmental table is a constant that our ministry can provide in a time of transition.

As our hungry community continues to grow, we need
your help to meet the increasing need.

Monthly pledges, large or small, help us stock our pantry with healthy nourishment, maintain our equipment, provide cooking and serving supplies, and save for the future needs of our Soup Kitchen guests.

It’s easy to get started on a monthly pledge today at the PayPal or Square link below.