The Food Cupboard was run by Fr. Clive Clapson, recently-retired Priest at St. Salvador’s, assisted by Katie Clapson, and volunteers from Coldside Parish (C of S) and elsewhere. A number of our helpers were once themselves helped from our Food Cupboard. Donations of food and funds come in regularly from most of the Episcopal congregations in the area, several primary schools, St. Andrew’s Cathedral (RC), and a number of C of S parishes.
Fr. Clive says: "Although some of those we help are referred to us by voluntary and governmental agencies, we turn away no-one who is not referred to us. Jesus did not say: 'I was hungry and you fed me because I was referred to you'. Ours is a response to need, doing what Jesus told us to do. Are we sometimes being lied to and taken advantage of? Sure. But our responsibility is to respond to those who present themselves to us for help. Whether they are telling the truth or not is their responsibility. Both we and they are answerable to God for what we say and do.”
The Food Cupboard began on Fr. Clive’s first Sunday at St. Salvador’s fifteen years ago, when someone appeared after the Mass asking for help. As no food items were available that day, some tinned items were stockpiled for the following Sunday. Our average disbursement is now between 60 and 70 bags a week, with occasional spikes as high as 90.
Some of the stories from the last almost ten years of the Food Cupboard outreach can be found in Fr. Clive’s book “Outpost of Glory”, available from the CLC Bookshop in Dundee and from Amazon.
St. Salvador’s has a long history of service in one of Scotland’s most challenging urban areas. Its outreach flows from its highly ornate presentation of the Gospel in its services. Fr. Clive has been on voluntary half pay for the last three years in order to keep the ministry at St. Salvador’s going, and especially its outreach to those in need. He says: “The Church is a hospital for sinners, not a museum for saints. What we do at St. Salvador’s and how we do it may not be to everyone’s taste. It’s only for sinners in search of the Saviour.”
Supermarkets who are partners in this work are ASDA Myrekirk, ASDA Kirkton, and Morrisons. At Morrisons and Myrekirk there are baskets available for donations by shoppers.
The Food Cupboard needs non-perishable donations, especially: tinned soup, tinned baked beans, tinned tuna, tinned meat, pasta and pasta sauce, toilet paper, UHT milk, biscuits, soap, and shampoo.