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Eaton County church group aims to feed community free, chef-prepared meals to fight food insecurity

Sharing Grace is a food ministry operating out of Thrive Church in Eaton County
A group of dedicated volunteers wants to make sure people in their community know that there’s help available for anyone in need of food.
Posted at 9:19 AM, Aug 12, 2022
and last updated 2022-08-12 09:19:13-04

CHARLOTTE, Mich. — A group of dedicated volunteers wants to make sure people in their community know that there’s help available for anyone in need of food. The members of Thrive Church in Eaton Rapids are combining resources and working to fill the food gap in Eaton County.

Mike Stump has spent more than 30 years as a chef cooking for the country's elite, including golfers at the Master's, exclusive country clubs and even a few presidents, but now he's on a new mission that pairs his passion for food with his love for the community.

"My wife said to me one day. 'What do you want to do if you could do anything?' She was thinking we were gonna go travel. I said I want to give good food to people who don't have hundreds of dollars a plate,” said Stump.

And that's how Sharing Grace was born.

It’s a ministry that Stump, his wife and some volunteers from Thrive Church are working to get off the ground.

Every Wednesday, the group meets at the Eaton Rapids Church at 5:15 p.m. to prepare to serve hot, free meals to those in need.

They've been at it for three weeks now, and each week, their goals get bigger.

"Somebody I met tonight, who is back for the third week, said 'Someone prayed with me last week and that meant more to me even than the food I got to eat,'” said lead pastor, Katie Lance.

The group is hoping to get the word out that anyone wanting a hot meal can drive up to the church on Wednesdays from 6 p.m. until 8 p.m.

They'll get a free meal, a full belly and fellowship.

"I know what its like when people are scrambling trying to make ends meet. This is a good thing, Maybe when they get food they will come in for spiritual food later,” said volunteer Hank.

Sharing Grace is looking to expand by offering hot meals more than once a week.

They are hoping the community will pitch in to support the effort by volunteering time and monetary donations.

If you'd like to learn more, we have a link to their Facebook page

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Erica Murphy

Erica Murphy

1:21 PM, Mar 03, 2021

Charlotte & Eaton Rapids

Neighborhood Reporter

Erica Murphy

FOX 47 News Neighborhood Newsletter