The four downtown Amarillo churches that make up the coalition ??4Amarillo?? packed up the school supplies from their recent school supply drive and loaded them up to be delivered to local elementary schools.
Each downtown church received a list of four items that they needed to fill for today??s delivery. The lists consisted of hefty numbers like 200 three-ring binders, 800 packs of #2 pencils, 400 notebooks, and 800 quart or gallon size Ziploc baggies. That meant that boxes designated for Bivins, Sunrise, San Jacinto and Margaret Wills Elementary Schools each received a plethora of at 16 different supplies to add to their classrooms. An expense that often falls on the shoulders of the teacher if they students cannot afford them or do not bring them to class.
??A lot of these teachers wind up spending money out of their own pockets to buy supplies for their students who can??t afford it,?? said Senior Pastor of Central Church of Christ, Allan Stanglin.
The coalition between the churches began two and a half years ago, originally just as a time for the four pastors of the churches to meet together and pray. Now, it is a chance for them to expand their outreach and to surpass boundaries.
??This is a way for us to show Amarillo, The churches really can share a time of fellowship, share together in service, because we really are stronger together than we are alone,?? said Burt Palmer, pastor of the Polk Street United Methodist Church.
The National Retail Federation says the average parent spends around $330 per student when buying school supplies. The Consumer Credit Counsel Services also says this is the second most expensive retail season for American consumers.
But the churches do not just hope that their school supply donations help the classroom, but hope it will send a message as well.
??We want to tell these kids, ??You got these school supplies not just form one church but from all the churches in downtown Amarillo and I think that sends a good positive message for them about what God is doing and how big God is,???? said Pastor Stanglin.