The Tribune Democrat, Johnstown, PA


May 10, 2013

All creatures great and small

Church’s pet food bank a wonderful endeavor

— Many of the volunteer family-assistance programs in our communities have had their beginnings in God’s house. We naturally and normally look to our churches and synagogues for spiritual guidance and humanitarian support.

And now, thanks to the congregation of St. Mark’s Episcopal Church in downtown Johnstown, families

can find help for their pets, too. 

Called the Animal Welfare Ministry, the organization has opened a pet food bank. Financially struggling Cambria County residents can obtain pet food from the ministry to feed their hungry animals.

What a great idea, and we’re sure the volunteers at the new ministry wouldn’t object if others would like to copy the idea.

“There are always people who fall upon hard times,” Steven Hoover, the animal ministry’s director, told our Dave Sutor.

“This gives them a hand.”

Unfortunately, we’ve had plenty of examples over the past several years of individuals and families falling on hard times. 

While we often associate hard economic times forcing families to seek help with obtaining food and paying utility bills, perhaps we overlook the effect those times have on the welfare of our beloved pets who provide us with joy on a daily basis.

We applaud St. Mark’s efforts.

And here’s the really good part: St. Mark’s also has a regular food pantry at the church for people in need.

“If you have a pet, a pet is part of your family,” Hoover said.

Anybody in need of food for a pet can contact Hoover at 410-3832 or stevenhoover19

Donations of pet food and money are being accepted by the church, 335 Locust St.

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