End Time Ministries International and community partners have hosted Thanksgiving events over the past three years where they have handed out hundreds of Thanksgiving baskets with all the fixings to Madison-area families in need. It’s traditionally been a big and inspirational day, but never as big as the one they are planning for this Saturday.
“Our goal this year is to hand out up to 500 turkeys with sides like corn, green beans, cake mix, stuffing, and 6-8 sweet potatoes to families. This year, we will be able to do more because of our partnership,” Bishop Godfrey Stubbs, the senior pastor of End Time Ministries International, tells Madison365.
“We’ve done this in past years, but I’ve never done it with this many participants and partners,” he continues. “This is the first time I really have had so much partnership. When we first did it in 2020, we did it on a small level and we were able to give away 200 turkeys and 200 hams. In 2021, we were able to do even more giving out 300 turkeys and 300 hams.”
The goal this year is to hand out 500 turkeys with all the fixings which includes corn, green beans, mac & cheese, cake mix, stuffing and sweet potatoes. End Time Ministries, a predominantly Black church on Madison’s west side, will be able to do even more than in years past by partnering with a host of local groups including Warming Hands Residential Services LLC, Families Back To The Table, Hands on Residential Services, JFMJ Academy, High Point Church, and Connecting The Dot’s by Mattie.
The demand for Thanksgiving baskets has always been high. So much, that sometimes in the past, End Time Ministries would sometimes run out of food. “We had to get help from [Boys and Girls Club of Dane County CEO] Michael Johnson last year and he was able to bless us with some ham so we were able to keep our flow going,” Stubbs remembers. The Boys and Girls Club of Dane County hosts a similar Thanksgiving Baskets Dinner around this time every year. “Michael had about 100 hams that he donated to us so we were able to keep it going because we ran out.
“I really appreciated that help from Michael. But this year we are going to be ready and we have set 500 as our goal,” Stubbs adds.
The Thanksgiving baskets is just one of the many things End Time Ministries International does to help out the community including giving away thousands of backpacks to kids at its annual Back 2 School event and providing Christmas meals and Holiday Gift Bags during the holiday season.
End Time Ministries Pastor Shelia Stubbs, wife of Bishop Godfrey Stubbs and a state representative in the Wisconsin State Legislature, says she’s excited about Saturday’s event and tells Madison365 that it’s “an honor to serve my community in every way that I can and to continue this tradition of giving back.”
“I want to thank the diverse set of organizations, non-profits, and faith-based communities that are coming together to make this event possible,” she says. “With their assistance, we are going to have an inclusive event that can provide assistance to any neighbor in need. As winter sets in, we know that times are difficult for many families in our community. By preparing and giving out Thanksgiving baskets, we will provide families with a meal no matter their income.
“That is why I am proud to spend time volunteering and helping sponsor this event,” she adds. “If you are able, please consider taking some time this season to help serve your community. When our community comes together, we all do better.”
End Time Ministries International, located at 15 Ellis Potter Court, first officially opened in Madison in December of 2003 and its membership has expanded quite a bit since then.
Since the pandemic began, Godfrey Stubbs says that he has seen many people struggling financially. That, combined with massive inflation, has really put a crunch on local families during the holiday season.
“During the pandemic is where we really got the idea to do the Thanksgiving baskets because people were really hurting,” Godfrey Stubbs says. “Even when we just had 200 [dinners] they still went really fast. We created a traffic jam on Schroeder Road [on Madison’s west side]. I remember saying ‘we got to do it a little better than that.'”
So they added more meals and expanded and fluctuated the time people could come in to get their dinners to make a smoother-run operation.
“We feel like we are better reaching our community now. Even though some persons may get left behind, we feel for the majority of people, we can be able to help out in a small way when inflation, unemployment and all of these other things are going on in their lives,” Godfrey Stubbs says. “This is a great opportunity to offer a nice Thanksgiving meal and to put food on the table so that no families get left behind.”