MADISON -- People living in cities rarely get the chance to meet the people who grow their food. That’s one reason why the Churches Center for Land and People (CCLP) has developed an opportunity to connect farmers with urban consumers.
St. Thomas Aquinas Parish in Madison partnered with CCLP to hold a Winter Farmers’ Market and brunch recently. Local farm families offered produce for sale at the market and provided ingredients for a brunch prepared by Barbara Wright from the Dardanelles Restaurant.
A portion of the farm produce purchased benefited the Harvest of Hope Farm Crisis Fund, serving farm families throughout rural Wisconsin. Part of the brunch proceeds benefited St. Vincent de Paul, Lussier Community Education Center, and MOM food pantries.
Trudi Jenny, one of the organizers of the event at St. Thomas Aquinas, said the event was a success. “We had a great volunteer group headed by Katie Miller. We brought three different parish groups together on the volunteer team: Young Adults, Parish Life, and Justice and Peace. The initial reaction is that we should repeat this event next year,” she said.
Tom Nelson, the Diocese of Madison’s Rural Life Office coordinator, attended the brunch. “The St. Thomas Aquinas Parish community was able to cap the end of its annual week observing the feast of St.Thomas Aquinas through this wonderful gathering built around a splendid meal of locally raised farm products, while allowing for area farmers to promote their products and sell to non-rural consumers.
“I hope we can provide other parishes and parish clusters the opportunity to host a winter harvest brunch and sale, and I look forward to sharing details of how to get started with any interested pastors and parish representatives.” For more information, call Nelson at 608-821-3093 or e-mail