Local congregations offering food to children, seniors and free wi-fi for students


Knowing people are going to need support at this time, two local churches are stepping up to meet more than just spiritual needs.

First Baptist Church in Seymour is taking measures to help feed children and the elderly in the community who are impacted by recent closures from the coronavirus public health crisis.

Through its COVID-19 Rapid Response outreach, church members are putting together meal bags and distributing them to families and individuals in the community.

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The bags include bread, juice boxes, peanut butter and jelly, instant macaroni and cheese, peanut butter or cheese crackers, fruit snacks, apple sauce, Pop-tarts, cereal and other items. Each bag is enough for around four people.

Pickup is from 3 to 5 p.m. on Mondays at the church. People can drive up under the carport and volunteers will load the bags in vehicles. Bags can be delivered by calling 812-522-1909.

“We find our community, our state, our nation and our world in crisis,” said Pastor Mike Lyon. “When there are hurting people, there are two choices: we can turn away, or we can rise to the occasion to meet the needs of our community. This is just one way we will rise up to share the love of Jesus.”

Lyon’s wife, Monica, said after she saw people posting on Facebook about helping each other out with food, she knew the church could do the same.

“I said let’s just do something,” she said. “If we get the food and tell people to come, they will come.”

But she had no idea how many people would show up for the first distribution Monday. With all the donations collected in just a few days, they had between 40 and 50 bags to hand out.

The church continues to accept donations of food and money to purchase items to fill the bags.

Lyon said other churches have stepped up to help too including Seymour Christian and The Point.

Community Church of Brownstown is partnering with Double Down Outreach to provide free breakfast and lunches for children along with free Wi-Fi hotspots for local students to do homework from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. Monday through Friday for the next three weeks.

For more information or to sign up, call 812-216-3836.

Pastor Terry Fordice said it was decided the church needed to be a leader and provide stability in times of uncertainty.

“Not every family can just take off work or have internet,” he said. “There is a need in our community, and we are going to step up and do what we can to fill that need.”

The church is being cautious, however, and asking children who are not feeling well to stay home and for those who do attend to wash their hands, use sanitizer and keep at least three feet away from each other.

“We just don’t want to see kids go hungry or have more pressure put on them because they can’t do their homework assignments,” Fordice said.

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