Pilgrim Rest Church seeks volunteers for Tuesday Pantry

A Conroe pantry that helps those in need is looking for more hands for its weekly operation.

The Pilgrim Rest Missionary Baptist Church hosts a drive-thru food pantry every Tuesday morning from 9-11 a.m., where volunteers place food in participants’ vehicles.

According to longtime church member Henry Calyen, the church is looking for about four more volunteers for the weekly project.

He said volunteers must be able to lift up to 30 pounds when placing the items in the participants’ vehicle.

“We’re all over 60. I can’t believe we’ve been able to go on for so long,” he said.

The Pilgrim Rest Pantry was modeled after and inspired by the First Christian Church Pantry in Conroe. During the pandemic, pastors Pilgrim Rest BJ and Rosie Plattenburg began volunteering at the First Christian Pantry on Wednesday mornings.

They knew that many people in the community around the church had benefited from the effort of First Christian Church. They wanted to bring a pantry to the neighborhood around the church and the first Tuesday morning pantry was held in January 2021.

Since then, weekly events have been held at 509 S. Third Street with support from the Montgomery County Food Bank and the nonprofit Keep US Fed.

The couple have been involved in ministry for 34 years and never imagined they would be able to bring the church into the community and essentially have a Tuesday morning church as they serve the community.

Rosie Plattenburg said something happens every Tuesday, regardless of group size, to affirm their work.

And in a way, the pandemic has been a blessing for their church as they make new connections in the community.

“We knew there was a need, but we didn’t know how to open the door. But God opened that door. The pandemic has been a blessing to the church and allowed it to flourish. In serving others, we have found such pleasure and brought the church out of its confinement to the four walls of the church,” Pastor BJ Plattenburg said in a July 2021 article in The Courier.

Those interested in volunteering can contact Calyen at 936-524-0716 for more information.

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