Posted Online: Feb. 14, 2014, 2:40 pm

Nazarene baby pantry moves to new crib

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By Leon Lagerstam, llagerstam@qconline.com

COLONA -- A baby pantry stays in a Nazarene family, but moves to a new crib.

People who need diapers, baby clothes, wipes, bibs, blankets and other baby gear will find supplies at Grace Community Church of the Nazarene, 507 1st St.

The pantry will open at its new Colona site from 10 a.m. to noon today, and on the third Saturday's of every month after that.

It operated out of the Coal Valley Church of the Nazarene until the church closed at the end of December.

Three local churches offered to host the pantry, spokeswoman Phyllis Webb said. Colona just seemed like the most conveniently located, she said.

Colona was "smack in the middle" of areas where a majority of pantry customers come from, Grace church pastor the Rev. Dave Smith said.

Pantry volunteers "thought this would be ideal for a new location, and our board was all for it," he said.

"It also offers more space than we had before," Ms. Webb said.

Coal Valley Nazarene members learned on Dec. 19 the church would close Dec. 29, "because financially it couldn't keep going," she said. "The church had been there for 55 years, and is now up for sale."

"It had been a small church, but dwindled down until it could no longer be self-supportive," Rev. Smith said. "The baby pantry was a separate entity that used the church as a staging area.

"It's a good ministry, and the need for it was more than I first thought," he said. "I didn't realize how big of an outreach the baby pantry is."