Thursday, October 8, 2009

My Eyes Filled With Tears

Bruce walked into our living room last night and found me in tears reading this news story.  It's about something that happened in the town that I grew up in and went to grade school.

From the News Times

Vandals ransack, damage New Milford church food pantry
By Nanci G. Hutson
staff writer

NEW MILFORD - United Methodist Church volunteer Hank LeMien's red-rimmed eyes roamed the walls of the Our Daily Bread food pantry Wednesday; walls stained by tomato sauce and peanut butter.

Raw spaghetti crunched beneath his feet.  School pencils were strewn along the floor next to a broken window of the small white building on the grounds of the Route 7 church.

"Why?  Why would they down this?" said LeMien, 75, as he walked around inside the three-year-old pantry, which provides meals to some 50 families a week.

The vandalism was discovered Wednesday morning.

The vandals apparently pried open a hinged metal padlock, cracked open a side window and hurled cans of tomato sauce, denting the plywood walls and sending sauce up as high as the ceiling.  Lighting was ripped down.

The pantry's freezers were left open, and more than have-dozen whole chickens were thrown on the floor.  All the donated meat in the freezer will need to be replaced.

LeMien estimate the vandals destroyed a couple of thousand dollars' worth of food.

School supplies and toys intended for children were tossed around the room and stained with food remnants.  The refrigerators were smeared with liquids.

A box of automatic blood pressure cuffs worth about $500 was stolen.

The extent of the vandalism brought tears to church leaders and volunteers Wednesday morning.  a few were speechless as they picked up paper towels and sprays to start cleaning so the pantry could open for its regularly scheduled hours Thursday.

"Is this the saddest thing you've ever seen?  It's nauseating," said the Rev. Stefanie Bennett, the church pastor, who called police Wednesday morning.

"All these people did was take food from the mouths of hungry people.  It's mind-boggling ... and so very sad."

click here to read the rest of the article


There are no words ... but I have to try.

Jesus' ministry was not some kind of theoretical concept.  It was real.  It was hands on.  And it calls us to do radical things.

Jesus called us to love, to reach out and to serve.  He saw potential in humanity.  He knew that the world could be a better place.  God created the world and saw that it was Good.  We can make it good again.

Okay - let's take a step back and take religion out of it ...

How is this act of vandalism beneficial to humanity?  Why would someone do this?  Innocent people are going to go without basic human essentials.  Children won't have school supplies.

Humanity can be better.  We can do better.

I am so sad to think that someone has so much hurt and anger inside of them that would lead to this.

For my Connecticut readers - I would encourage you to either host some sort of food drive or bring your own contribution to the food pantry as they work to re-stock their shelves.  New Milford United Methodist Church is located on Route 7 across the street from John Pettibone School.  You can call for their hours: 860-354-4596.

If anyone else feels called to help out monetarily, you can send donations to:
Our Daily Bread Food Pantry
c/o New Milford United Methodist Church
68 Danbury Road
New Milford, CT 06776


  1. That is absolutely terrible. I can't figure out people. Selfish people. So sorry this happened to that community.

  2. When I was chair of our Concession Stand at Chattahoochee High School, we were twice vandalized. The vandals used the fire extinguishers to spray yellow powder over everything. They tore down lighting and fans, practically everything that was on the walls, opened freezers, broke anything they could find. It was a disaster area. I know what it's like to discover that kind of vandalism. At least we weren't feeding the homeless. There aren't words for that.....well maybe one...DESPICABLE.

  3. Hi Sarah, my name is Cate, my mother is the church manager at the New Milford United Methodist Church. I was doing a Google search looking for articles that have been published about what happened to us the other day when I came across your blog. You talked about the article bringing you to tears, well your entry had the same effect of me. It was beautiful and I just wanted to say thank your for your support. It's been a rough couple days but the community response (and even the response from outside our immediate community) has INCREDIBLE. I think you'll be happy to know that even though we lost a lot of food, as of right now we have more food then we know what to do with! Thank you so much for helping spread our story. God bless. -Cate

  4. Cate, thank you SO much for your message. I got chills when I read it. I'm glad there has been such a positive outreach to the food pantry. Now that some of the physical needs of the community are met, you all can work to nourish the emotional and spiritual wounds that may have incurred over the past couple of days. If there is any new news or something I can do, please let me know!! Peace, Sarah.


Hello and thanks for commenting! Unless I have your email address, I respond to all questions directly in the comment form. Check back if you've asked one! xo, Sarah

Related Posts with Thumbnails