Bishop Sumner: Remember Those in Need
March 24, 2020
Dear Brothers and Sisters,
Peace of Christ Jesus be with you all. I hope this letter finds you all in good health and safe.
These are indeed times of strain for all of us. It is an especially trying time for those in our city who live in poverty. Before the COVID-19 crisis, Dallas had the highest child poverty rate per capita in America. This has only continued to increase in these past weeks with families unable to access free and reduced lunch through the public school system. The Episcopal Diocese of Dallas has had a long partnership with the Greater Dallas Coalition – a ministry dedicated to serving those in most need in the Southern sector of the City of Dallas. Right now, in the Southern sector of Dallas, many of our partner ministries are having a hard time accessing the financial resources needed to get the basics to people in need. Pastor Karen Belnap from Inspired Vision and Compassion Center reported that they are serving 1,200 people a day with food and basic necessities such as diapers and paper products. She said many people have lost their jobs overnight and are showing up weeping with lack of food. Pastor Belnap reports that they do not have enough resources to keep up with the great need and their shelves are virtually bare. This is also true of the Metropolitan Dream Center. We have been in touch with our key partner ministries below. They all report heartbreaking need in our city.
Below are ways you and your parish can help live into Jesus’ call to serve those in need. This is the time we need to come together in partnership with our brothers and sisters across the city to be the hands, feet, and heart of Jesus to our most vulnerable. Thank you in advance for your partnership. Please do not hesitate to call Canon Carrie Headington at 903-399-3230 and and/or Archdeacon Rosemary Trei at 972-978-9164 and .
You are welcome to help any of these ministries below directly or you can make a donation to the Greater Dallas Coalition general fund that is distributing resources according to most need in South Dallas. All of your donations will go to ministries serving the poor in South Dallas. The Greater Dallas Coalition is a 501c3 non-profit.
You can give online at https://www.greaterdallascoalition.net/Or send check to:
Greater Dallas Coalition
c/o Executive Director Ron Woodcock
P.O. Box 151221
Dallas, Texas 75215
You may also give directly to the following ministries which are all 501c 3’s and are tax deductible:
Inspired Vision Compassion Center – Pastor Karen Belnap, Director. Location: 2019 N. Masters, Dallas, Texas 75217
Open 7 days a week
*They are currently serving over 1,200 families daily. It is run like a grocery store with all free products for people in need. They report they have never seen as much need as they are seeing right now. This center especially serves families in the Southern Sector.
They are in great need of financial assistance. A donation of any amount is helpful.
A donation of $275 allows them to access a semi-truck of goods. Their rent is $5,000 monthly and $2,000 for electricity.
*They are especially running low on diapers (especially small infant sizes- newborn, 1,2), soap, cleaning supplies like bleach, hand sanitizer, vinegar, washing detergent, baby food and formula. ***
*They need hand sanitizers for volunteers and masks.
To make a donation: Go to https://www.ivcompassion.org/ or send check to Inspired Vision, c/o Pastor Karen Belnap, 2019 N. Masters, Dallas, Texas 75217
Metropolitan Dream Center – Director, Margaret James.
Location: 4650 South Hampton Road, Suite 97, Dallas, Texas 75339
Open 11:00 a.m. – 4:00 p.m. Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday
*This is a ministry especially for older people in need in the Southern Sector of Dallas.
Ms. Margaret James reports that the need is immense right now. They are out of all paper products and have very little canned goods left. They are in desperate need of canned goods, water, paper products such as toilet paper! They are also in need of more gloves for volunteers. They also need bags with which to bag the canned goods. They have pasta but no canned goods.
Since many of the seniors living in poverty cannot get out of their houses at this time, they will be delivering food goods to them. Hence the need for canned goods.
Ways you can help:
Make a financial donation. They are very low on funds to purchase goods. Go to
If you are in your 30s or younger, they could use your help to deliver goods to seniors. Most of the volunteers are seniors themselves. They need some muscles to help.
Dallas International Street Church- Pastor Karen Dudley.Location: 2706 S. Second Avenue, Dallas, Texas 75210
This is a drop-in facility that is open 24 hours and turns no one away. There is an increase of those needing emergency shelter and food. They are currently serving between 1,400-1,600 people weekly with meals (over 200 meals per day) and temporary shelter. They are in need of finances, water, bulk food items, and to-go box food containers.
To make a donation go to https://www.dallasinternationalstreetchurch.org/Phone: 214-928-9595 or mail check to:
Dallas International Street Church PO Box 151461,
Dallas, TX 75315
4. Making It Count, Inc. – Director, Rhonda Willingham Phone: 214-916-8222
Facebook: Making It Count Inc.
Rhonda and her team feed people literally off the streets. They feed over 300 people per week hot meals and food in to-go containers. She reports that many of the ministries have stopped serving people on the streets due to COVID-19. She says people are going hungry. She reports that there is an increase in children going hungry on the streets. Rhonda and her team make hot meals and serve them. Financial donation would help her the most and also bulk food items like pasta and tomato sauce and also to-go containers.
All of these ministries are 501c3 and tax deductible.
We all feel the tension of this time- we are all going through something together but apart. We know that we as the Church need to discern how in this difficult time we are to rise up and reach out, and yet it is hard to know how. What if this time apart were also a time to be together as a city, as the Church, as Christ’s servant in obedience to His command to us in Matthew 25. These opportunities are surely part of His call to us at this time. May God bless you all as you find shelter in that place where the risen Christ dwells.
The Rt. Rev. Dr. George R. Sumner Bishop of Dallas