By Katie Beckmann Mahon, Communications Manager
This week’s “Embracing Faith” article will focus on Embracing Faith through Ministry.
“Owe nothing to anyone except to love one another;
for whoever loves their neighbor has fulfilled the law.”
To say Sr. Dorothy Hall, OP’s ministry last year was challenging would be an understatement.
For Sr. Dorothy, a Sister of Saint Dominic of Blauvelt, New York, her ministry as a Pastoral Associate at St. Charles Borromeo Resurrection and All Saints Church in Harlem is essential. During the pandemic, Sr. Dorothy found creative ways to manage the food pantry from afar.
On the most recent episode of the Hearts Afire Podcast, Sr. Dorothy explained the challenges, “It was difficult having to all of a sudden having to work from home instead of going down to the ministry every day. I wasn’t prepared to work from home. However, I managed to survive. In terms of the food pantry, I had difficulty in the beginning. I didn’t have access to reports and other necessary items. I did get help, though, which helped me able to continue ordering for the food pantry. God made a way. I’m grateful.”
One of those ways that helped Sr. Dorothy to continue operating the food pantry that served nearly 350 people weekly was her “tremendous” volunteers.
“(The volunteers) never stopped coming. They came weekly to supply our participants with food, and thanks be to God, the pantry never ran out of food during the pandemic. We were able to continue every week having ample food to distribute to participants.”
As Sr. Dorothy continues to navigate through the day-to-day challenges from the pandemic, something that keeps her motivated is the thing she misses most about her ministry; a packed church with a full choir, the interaction with parishioners, as well as talking with the individuals she serves at the food pantry.
Among further reflection, Sr. Dorothy added, “Church is very important to the African American community. In our history, the Church was always a part of our upbringing. It’s a place where we gather, praise God, fellowship. Basically, it’s like family.”