The following letter of support for the Good Food Junction at Station 20 West was signed by the church leaders of Saskatoon in a public event on Wednesday, November 24th, 2010 at St. George’s Parish Hall in Saskatoon.
Saskatoon Church Leaders support of the Good Food Junction at Station 20 West
This Christmas season many churches in Saskatoon seek to enhance the momentum of a vital project – the community-owned Good Food Junction cooperative store located at Station 20 West. It is a community project that the churches seek to support as a concrete expression of God’s love.
Christians share the conviction that in Jesus Christ God has drawn near to us. The Advent and Christmas seasons remind us that when God in Christ came to dwell among us he was born and lived in poverty and simplicity. In Jesus’ ministry, we see his profound concern for those who were in need. He gave dignity to those who were poor, suffering or oppressed. He identified himself with those who were hungry or thirsty, saying that whatever we do for those most in need, we do for him (Matthew 25:31-40). As his disciples we have a moral imperative to follow his example.
Church groups serve in many projects which support the people of the core neighbourhoods, such as the Food Bank, the Bridge, the Salvation Army and Friendship Inn, among others.
Saskatoon’s core neighbourhoods are the heart of the city. For our city to be healthy, it needs a healthy heart. Maintaining good health is a challenge for many in the area whose needs are high and whose resources are limited. Access to healthy food is vital for wellness and self-reliance. Since 1997, no full-service grocery store has operated in our core neighbourhoods. Many residents have no cars and thus have little access to healthy, affordable food.
The Good Food Junction, at 20th St. and Ave. L, will provide in-store nutrition education and offer healthy food at reasonable prices, close to home. Equipping the store will cost approximately $650,000. Being able to accomplish this without going into debt is crucial to the store’s success.
Together we can bring this essential service to the people of our core neighbourhoods. This is not specifically a church initiative: neither is it the project of a single political party, nor should we as Christian communities allow it to be so. The potential for good is immense.
As church leaders and as individuals we commit ourselves to making the Good Food Junction a priority for the weeks leading up to Christmas. We will express support through our prayers, practical assistance, and where appropriate through fundraising to equip the store. We do this in the name of Jesus Christ who is Emmanuel, God-with-us.
Most Rev. Bryan Bayda, C.Ss.R., Bishop, Ukrainian Catholic Eparchy of Saskatoon
Most Rev. Donald Bolen, Bishop, Roman Catholic Diocese of Saskatoon
Rev. Jeremiah Buhler, Area Church Minister, Mennonite Church Saskatchewan
Jay Cowsell, Saskatoon Monthly Meeting, Religious Society of Friends (Quakers)
Rev. Amanda Currie, Minister, Presbytery of Northern Saskatchewan, Presbyterian Church in Canada
Rev. Claire Ewert-Fisher, Executive Director, Mennonite Central Committee
Rev. Cynthia Halmarson, Bishop, Saskatchewan Synod, Evangelical Lutheran Church in Canada
Rt. Rev. David Irving, Bishop, Anglican Diocese of Saskatoon
Rev. Ron McConnell, Chair, Riverbend Presbytery, United Church of Canada
Rev. Harry Strauss, Chair, Saskatoon Evangelical Ministers Fellowship