Holy Name of Jesus Catholic Community (HNOJ) in Wayzata received this year's Outstanding Congregation Award from Minnesota FoodShare, an organization that promotes food shelf donations statewide. In addition to the church's honored, Plymouth resident Bill Rudolph, a long-time parishioner at Holy Name of Jesus, received the Outstanding Volunteer Award for his exceptional food shelf volunteer efforts over the past two decades. Both Rudolph and HNOJ were nominated for these awards by Interfaith Outreach and Community Partners (IOCP).
Minnesota FoodShare directs the largest food drive in the state, its annual March Campaign. Food items collected during this campaign are used to restock 300 food shelves throughout Minnesota, which serve countless families and individuals in need each year. For this campaign, IOCP posed a 50-50 Challenge to the community it serves. The goal: collect 50,000 lbs. of food and $50,000 in financial contributions within the month of March. This year, due in part to contributions from the HNOJ community, IOCP exceeded its goal, receiving a record 53,316.85 lbs. of food and collecting $55,739.63 in funds.
But at HNOJ, the campaign doesn't stop April 1. The parish collects food items every week as part of the offertory during Mass. About 150-200 families participate each weekend, with the children carrying food items up to a collection box residing near the altar. On this box is a message: "Our Eucharist is incomplete so long as our brothers and sisters are hungry." Every Monday for 20 years, Rudolph brought these donations to IOCP. In 2010, HNOJ donated 17,635 lbs. of food for this cause.
Congratulations to the team at HNOJ for supporting a worthy cause! Holy Name of Jesus, 155 Cty. Rd. 24, Wayzata; 763.473.7901; hnoj.org