Connecting Columbia Union Seventh-day Adventists

Kate Sharbaugh and Emma Schartner stand with one of their pantries.

Pennsylvania Youth Start Second Food Pantry, Spark Other Pop-Ups

Story by V. Michelle Bernard

Last April, Kate Sharbaugh, now 13, and Emma Schartner, 12, opened a pop-up pantry distributing food and toiletries in a lime green china cabinet outside a local church on Friendship Avenue in Pittsburgh. They have since opened another pantry outside Pennsylvania Conference’s Carnegie Simple Way church.

“Even if you don’t have a lot, you can still make a difference by giving what you can,” says Schartner. “God provides just when it seems like our supplies and [food stock] are running low. … One thing is for sure, the ‘Little LIME (Loving, Inspiring, Ministering, Encouraging) Pantry’ would not exist without God’s amazing intervention.”

That intervention was recently seen in a very tangible way.

When Jessica Sharbaugh, Kate’s mom, recently checked with Carnegie Pastor John Kent to see if they needed to bring more food, Kent responded they didn’t need anymore because a local Catholic church had just donated $1,250 for the pantry. Also, the priest personally gave them an additional $200. “It’s amazing to see where God sends money from,” says Jessica.

A pastor from another church also recently contacted Jessica, asking how he could start a pantry at their church as well. “They said they were inspired by what the girls were doing,” she shares, “and they wanted to make a difference in their community as well.”

Kate, says they have seen many examples of God blessing the pantry. “We are giving it, and all its needs, over to Him. We want the pantry to be not only a way for people to get food, but, more importantly, a way for them to come to know Jesus.”

The project has also helped their faith grow. “I have learned to trust in God and that He will always provide. I never need to worry because He knows what I need and what we need to provide for these pantries,” says Kate, who attends the Indiana church with her family.

The teens would like to start another pantry in New Kensington. “We have the pantry and are looking for a good location,” says Sharbaugh. “We would like to encourage others to start something in their churches and towns so that this idea can grow.”

Interested in finding out more about the Little LIME Project? Click here.

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