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Angel Food to the rescue

By Staff | Jan 9, 2009

By Daniel Friend

Chronicle staff

At 5 a.m. on Jan. 17, about 60 local volunteers will gather at Covenant Baptist Church to pack food parcels for some 150 local families participating in Angel Food Ministries, a nationwide program helping to provide affordable groceries for people of all income levels.

The church, located off W.Va. 230 just south of Shepherdstown, is one of about 50 in West Virginia that take monthly orders for standard and senior units that cost about $30 – which includes a variety of meats, pasta, vegetables, cereals, eggs, milk and dessert.

“You don’t have to be on the welfare rolls to notice that gas is going up, the price of groceries is going up,” said Colleen Smith, Angel Food coordinator for Covenant. “It’s good quality USDA food.”

Smith said in 2004, only four churches in West Virginia participated in the program. That has grown to 48, with “more signing up all the time.”

With the economic hardships of a nationwide recession, more churches are feeding more participants, said Smith, noting there’s “no more basic need than food.” One local elderly woman was extremely grateful for the Angel Food program. She told Smith that before the program started, she couldn’t afford to buy meat at the grocery stores.

“It’s a wonderful ministry,” Smith said. “There are no income limits for anyone. … We’d love to feed every family that needs it.”

A local price comparison for the same amount and types of food at Wal-Mart food center added up to about $70 to $75, compared to the $30 Angel Food standard unit.

Payment for the January orders can still be made through today at the church, or online orders can be placed by 11:59 p.m. on Jan. 11. Visit www.angelfoodministries.com or covenantexperience.com for more information.

Customers have the option of purchasing the Senior Box instead of, or in addition to, the standard unit, for $28. The Senior Box contains 10 individual meals. This month, it includes barbeque pulled pork, chicken parmesan, sliced turkey; and burger stew. The meals are fully-cooked and labeled complete with heating instructions – just heat and serve. The Senior Box is ideal for individuals living alone.

Angel Food can be ordered and picked up at a variety of local sites. Orders must be picked up where the order is placed. Contact an Angel Food site for information about office hours for walk-in orders and times for food pick up.

The January 2009 Menu for the Angel Food Program for the $30 “standard” unit follows:

1.5 lb. Ribeye Steak (4 x 6 oz.)

4 lb. Leg Quarters

1.5 lb. Beef Patties (4 x 6 oz.)

18 oz. Cheese Filled Manicotti

2 lb. Pork Rib Strips

1 lb. Chicken Breast Fajita Strips

1 lb. Ground Turkey

1 lb. Broccoli

1 lb. Peas

6 ct. Oatmeal Variety Box

32 oz. 2% Shelf Stable Milk

8 oz. Blueberry Muffin Mix

12 ct. White Corn Tortillas

1 lb. Pinto Beans

7 oz. Chicken Flavored Rice & Vermicelli

Dozen Eggs


Local Angel Food sites:

Charles Town: Oakland Church, located on 70 Oakland Terrace. Contact: Terri Lynn Zaleski or Jill Schweitzer. Phone: 725-3737, e-mail tlzaleski@comcast.net Office hours: Monday-Friday, 9 a.m.-4:30 p.m. Online ordering available. Pick-up will be at Washington High School in Charles Town.

Martinsburg/Shepherdstown: Marvin Chapel United Methodist Church, located at 130 Gosling Marsh Road. Contact Sue Walker at 263-5755. e-mail: cwalker_18@verizon.net

Middleway: Grace Episcopal Church, located at 159 East St. in Middleway. Contact: Natalie Friend. Phone: 725-7073 graceepiscopal@


Shepherdstown: Covenant Baptist Church, located at 7485 Shepherdstown Pike. Contact: Colleen Smith: 876-2212, Ext. 43. e-mail: angelfood@covenant-mail.com Office hours: Monday-Friday: 9 a.m.-4 p.m. Online ordering available. 270-7128

Like most retail grocery stores, Angel Food Ministries also participates in the U.S. Food Stamp program, using the Off-Line Food Stamp Voucher system.

Distribution Day for January will be Saturday, Jan. 17. Orders must be picked up at the same site at which the order was placed. Contact site for pick up times. Food that has not been picked up by customers becomes a donation to Angel Food. There are no refunds or credits.

– To find out how your church can participate in the program, visit Oakland Church’s Web site at www.oakland-church.net or call the church office at 725-3737.

– For more information about ordering Angel Food Ministries visit www.angelfoodministries.com