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Concordia students lend a helping hand

While most students were at home relaxing for Thanksgiving break, local students from Concordia College-Selma were using their hands and hearts to feed Selma’s hungry.

Members of the school’s Lutheran Education Association and Spiritual Life group have been collecting canned goods for roughly a month. After also taking up cash donations, students delivered the food and donations earlier this week to area food pantries.

LEA president and Concordia student Russell Elser said LEA’s focus lies in a Biblical scripture based on service.

“Christ tells us in Matthew 25:34-40 that the least of us are like him,” Elser said. “Matthew 25:40, ‘and the king will answer them, truly, I say to you, as you did it to one of the least of these my brothers, you did it to me.’ So of course Christ’s love compels us to do his will … so it is natural that we seek to glorify him through these small gifts …”

Concordia director of communications Christine Weerts said students’ acts represent what true Christianity is all about.

“We all appreciated the food drive they led because it was a perfect example of living out our mission — service to the community,” Weerts said.

After holding a food drive last Thanksgiving, Elser said this year’s drive, along with selling candy, was much more successful.

“We sell candy all the time and it is used for different things,” Elser said. “We decided to donate the proceeds from the last month’s sales; a lot of thanks goes to Marla Arrington, ‘candy-n-chief’ … Demario Davis and Simon Ajak among others who helped and supported us.”

Elser said giving — such as working with area nursing homes or collecting prescription glasses for those in need, is a year-round project.

“Rev. president Dr. Mendedo has encouraged us to do something like this year round to meet the great need in Selma,” Elser said. “So there are many things that we are looking into in order to serve the community … it is my hope that we can move the Concordia community and all of Selma to give year round, because people are starving all the year round, not just on Thanksgiving day.”

For more information on how you can donate, call 874-5700.

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