The Heart of the Gospel, in a Grocery Store!
More than just a store
Clyde Thomas is the Senior Pastor at Victory Church and a Director at Hope Centre Ministries. He is the heart behind the recently launched Grocery Store in partnership with CBN’s Operation Blessing. Our correspondent, Beth Parkinson, spoke to him about its impact on the local community. It provides a welcoming store through the volunteers serving within and its affordable food.
“People (are) literally making the journey from a park bench or a prison cell to fully devoted followers of Christ. And they’re able to come into the grocery store, put an apron on, and for a moment, they’re, for the first time in many, many years, many of them are working.”
Clyde’s roles have enabled him to oversee a cycle of blessing – bringing people in dire situations into the rehab centres and seeing their lives turned around and blessed. They then volunteer and serve in the Grocery Store, gaining skills that will enable them to find work and, most importantly, show them their worth and value.
“They’re getting so much from being a part of the infrastructure. And actually, almost as much is being achieved in their lives, in terms of redeeming them to what they were always called to be, valuable contributors to this planet, as it is to the others. And they’re finding new levels of faith, and they’re seeing the adventure. They’re seeing that actually when you put your mind and heart to something it can be achieved.”
As the volunteers from the rehab centre and the mission-hearted church community get to know their regular customers, they can also help those in need. Whether it’s facilitating them with financial courses, rehab programmes or just providing a safe listening ear, the volunteers are the hands and feet of Jesus.
As Beth summarised: “The heart of the gospel, in a grocery store!”
Thank you to all our generous partners and donors for enabling these great projects!
“…gaining skills that will enable them to find work and, most importantly, show them their worth and value.”