Actions Still Speak Louder than Words 40 Years On

The #FaithItForward initiative recognizes the work of private citizens — doctors, nurses, police officers, firefighters, utility workers, teachers, students, store clerks, sanitation workers, administrative assistants— and non-profit social welfare organizations motivated by their faith to give of their time, energy and resources to help make life better for others in their own community.

To learn more about #FaithitForward, or to submit a story to be featured, visit https://www.facebook.com/FaithitForward.

I had the privilege of spending a day with the Salvation Army Golden Diners which daily serves meals to seniors over the age of 60 and delivers the same to elderly who cannot leave their homes. Its goal is to fight malnutrition among seniors by providing these meals free of charge, returning donations from those who are able back into the program.

The Golden Diners Program, headed by Director Kenneth Madden and celebrating 40 years of service, functions as a branch of the Salvation Army Tri-City Corps, which seeks to engage in holistic ministry aiding in people’s spiritual, emotional, and physical development in the Batavia-Geneva-St. Charles area in Illinois (part of the 14th Congressional District I represent). Commanded by Major Jonathan Miller and his wife Tammy, Tri-City Corps volunteers operate a food pantry at the Joe K. Anderson Community Center and are engaged in a number of efforts including job training and teaching technical and computer skills.

Calling out bingo

During my day with the Golden Diners, I was able to participate in the 13th annual March for Meals campaign, a key component of Meals on Wheels America. We prepared meals for delivery to seniors, spending time with our elderly at the community center.

For more than a century, the Salvation Army and its cohorts have contributed to bringing spiritual and physical assistance to individuals around the world, motivated by the original, inspiring vision of the Booth family.

Last year, the Salvation Army ran more than 10,000 community development programs serving more than a million people worldwide.

In our district, both the Joe K. Anderson Community Center and the Golden Diners Program continue met the needs of thousands of individuals every year.

Preparing Golden Diners meals with sons Kaden and Kole
Tri-City Corps Major Jonathan Miller and Golden Diners Director Kenneth Madden

The Salvation Army Tri-City Corps and the Golden Diners Program are living proof that actions speak louder than words — these servants are daily seeking to care “for the least of these” among us. While the many individuals involved in the Corps do not seek public praise for the organization’s actions, their faithful service deserves acknowledgment and gratitude.

As Pope Francis travels to the United States with his message of faith, hope and love, I hope the Salvation Army’s example inspires others of all beliefs to engage in their communities and serve their neighbors. #FaithItForward