A local church is getting into the giving spirit on Halloween.
Our Lady of Angels Food Pantry, 336 73rd St., and Catholic Charities Brooklyn and Queens hosted a Halloween harvest-themed food pop-up for neighbors in need on Wednesday, Oct. 28.
During the COVID-19 pandemic, the number of people served each month at the Catholic Charities-Our Lady of Angels Food Pantry has risen from 128 to 1,000.
Since March, Catholic Charities has provided more than 1.2 million meals to families in need at Brooklyn and Queens pantries.
“I think it’s a blessing that we are able to hold this event for those who are less fortunate,” said Father Kevin Abels. “So many people are in need, more so now since COVID.”
Abels said the parish also gives out $25 gift cards for Key Food. He also started a Thanksgiving food card drive, asking parishioners to give $100. To date, $4,600 has been collected.
“An event like this highlights the fact that Catholic Charities Brooklyn and Queens continues to be on the front lines assisting those facing food insecurity caused by the coronavirus pandemic,” said John Quaglione, deputy press secretary for the Diocese of Brooklyn. “COVID-19 has changed everything this year, including Halloween traditions, but this spirited event surely brought joy and made a difference for many in these challenging times.”
Each person at the pop-up received a box of food containing five pounds of meat, five pounds of dairy, 12 pounds of produce and one gallon of milk.
“The pumpkin giveaway and the staff dressed in costumes made this event special, but certainly, the distribution of the boxes of food to families who need help putting food on their tables was the highlight,” said Quaglione.