Agape Community Kitchen
Youth-led mission of The Presbyterian Church in Westfield
Due to the health risks posed by the COVID-19 novel coronavirus, Agape Community Kitchen has suspended our usual Wednesday evening dinner program. The decision to suspend service deeply grieves us. We love our neighbors and want everyone to be able to enjoy a hot, nutritious meal in the company of people who love them. On March 25, 2020 we gave our guests $20 gift cards to a local fast food restaurant, anticipating that this may buy them more than one hot meal. If the health crisis continues, we will work to find other creative means to provide a hot meal to our neighbors in Elizabeth.
In the mean time, if you are hungry and you need a meal, we have a few resources we can suggest:
- St. Joseph Service Center (118 Division St., Elizabeth) continues to distribute sandwiches daily, Monday – Friday from 9:00-12noon; 1:00-4:00pm and Saturday from 9:00-11:00am.
- Meal Distribution is happening every Monday – Saturday from 12:00-2:00pm at two locations in Elizabeth: O’Donnell Dempsey Center (618 Salem Ave, Elizabeth) and Stephen Sampson Center (800 Anna St., Elizabeth).
If you are an Agape volunteer (or want to become one!), we urge you to consider a donation to one of the following agencies, each of which serves our neighbors in Elizabeth and will need our support during these difficult times. If you wish to support Agape more directly, consider participating in the clothing drive (May 17-21, 2020 - just leave your bagged donations in the white church van at PCW during these dates), or you make a donation to Agape online on the church website. These organizations need our help:
- The Elizabeth Coalition to House the Homeless
- St. Joseph Social Service Center (they list grocery items you can buy and bring to them, if you can safely get to the store during your regular shopping trips).
- The Gateway YMCA
- Consider supporting FISH Hospitality Network, an organization you are likely already familiar with as a ministry of Westfield Presbyterian Church. Although they do not directly serve our Agape guests, they serve very vulnerable children and families and will need your support during this time.
What is Agape?
Agape is a Greek word that means love, but not just any love – God’s love. Agape is God’s unconditional love for the world. We express that every week when we open the doors of First Presbyterian Church in Elizabeth and welcome people into a space where they can enjoy a hearty meal in a loving environment.
Since 2000, Agape – as we call it – has been a youth-led mission of our church. We believe it is important to give young people meaningful ways to be in leadership roles through our church. With the support of a team of awesome adults, it is the students who lead the meal service. We value young people and know God does too. You don’t have to be Presbyterian to serve with us, you don’t even have to be Christian, you just have to be willing to show up and show your respect to the community to be a part of Agape.
When & Where
We meet every Wednesday @ 3:15PM in the church parking lot. Transportation is provided to and from Elizabeth. We usually return around 7:30PM.
Registration Form for Students
No RSVP necessary to volunteer, but a registration form must be completed and kept on file for students in grades 6-12.
We are always looking for adult volunteers – from our congregation, other churches or groups - to assist on site and behind the scenes in a variety of ways.