Ministries and Groups
St. Luke's Food Pantry
St. Lukes’ Food Pantry is a long-running Cathedral ministry. Begun in 1998, it has evolved into a weekly Thursday morning 8-11 pantry which currently serves approx. 100 families. We operate out of the Cathedral’s rear entrance at 134 Park Street.
We buy food from Good Shepherd Food Bank and get salvaged food and great assistance from South Portland Food Cupboard, Wayside Food Programs and Maine Coast Fishermen’s Association. Our neighbors are diverse: long-time Mainers, new immigrants, and those facing short-term food shortages.
Our band of 10-15 dedicated volunteers gather together the fresh, frozen, and canned food Wednesday mornings and distribute it on Thursdays. Some work one day, some both days. All of us find the work compelling and each other’s company enjoyable.
We benefit from loyal volunteers and donors, but the cost of food always increases and the need is always greater than our capacity. Please consider stopping by to see us in action either morning or by donating our most-needed items: flour, oil, pasta, dried beans. Food donations can be left at the rear of the Cathedral under the portico or brought to any church service.
Financial donations allow us to buy food from Good Shepherd Food Bank. Even when our visitor numbers surge, nobody goes away empty-handed; but we do strive to offer more than canned fruits and vegetables. Please donate online: https://onrealm.org/StLukesCathedra/-/form/give/FOODPAN
For more information:
Email Mary Brighthaupt, Exec. Director, St. Luke's Food Pantry
We have a passion for providing education and resources for children around the world. This is why we’ve partnered with the school of St. Simon and St. Jude, located in the rural mountains area of southern Haiti.
This collaboration supports the basic needs of the school children in Duny, Haiti. Current projects include providing lunches, scholarships, facility maintenance, and hurricane relief. We love the relationship we’ve built with the people in this community. Please consider donating or providing other resources to this partnership.
St. Elizabeth's Essentials Pantry
St. Elizabeth’s Jubilee Center a non-barrier Essentials Pantry located at St. Luke’s Cathedral is a diocesan ministry project which seeks to provide basic daily essentials to those living in need in the greater Portland, Maine area.
The Essentials Pantry continues to serve 250+ neighbors every Tuesday morning from 8:30 to 11 am. Essential items include toilet paper, laundry detergent, bath soap, etc. Each week, a unique item is offered. In addition, dental care products, diapers, soft housewares, and hard housewares are provided monthly.
Congregations support St. E’s financially, with volunteers, and by donating both new and used items. Each Tuesday, volunteers serve the public directly, sort donated items, and pack new items for distribution, among other things.
In-kind donations can be left in the blue St. Elizabeth donation box in the lower hall, next to the stairs. We do not accept donations of clothing, but we do welcome donations of winter coats, hats, gloves, and scarves. For more information, email Sarah Borgeson.
Many parishioners also volunteer with programs fighting hunger and homelessness through Preble Street.
Greater Portland Family Promise
Family Promise helps families in Greater Portland transition from homelessness or risk of eviction to stable homes. While the pre-COVID model worked with faith communities such as ours for temporary housing, the current model has changed the focus to connecting families with needed resources such as food, bus passes, and quarters for laundry and housing.
Volunteers at St. Luke’s work with graduate families directly to support them. St. Luke’s also provides space for the Family Promise monthly Peer Advisory Council (PAC), where families mentor new families and helps to train new volunteers. We also host the monthly distribution of culturally appropriate foods to program families.
Public Policy & Environmental Action Team (PPEAT)
PPEAT’s principal aim is to keep our congregation informed of legislative actions in Augusta, Maine. Becoming involved with this team is a great way to learn about our community and inspire positive change. This team is affiliated with the Maine Episcopal Network for Justice and the Public Policy Committee of the Maine Council of Churches.
As informed citizens, we can then take action at the state and municipal levels. Recent such actions have included contacting elected officials, writing letters to the editor, helping organize special events such as informational forums and voter registration drives, helping design specially-themed worship services, and getting ourselves trained in techniques such as non-violent direct action.
The St. Luke’s Public Policy and Environmental Action Team is committed to non-partisanship. We recognize that social justice and environmental care are Biblical values, and we seek to protect the environment that God has created and to implement Christ’s teachings on loving God and our neighbor and the Hebrew prophets’ directive to act justly and to love mercy and to walk humbly with our God.
For more information, email Ruth Roemer
Becoming Beloved Community
As clearly demonstrated throughout our nation, systemic racism pervades every secular and religious body in the United States. Prejudice and discrimination prevent all people from full and equal participation in God’s plan for Beloved Community within St. Luke’s and in the greater community where we live and serve. Like our nation, and following the example of the national Episcopal Church, St. Luke’s must examine its structure and practices to address any obvious or subtle forms of racism in its quest to become Beloved Community.
We look forward to collaborating with other St. Luke's ministries in these efforts. For more information, please contact the parish office.
- Sacred Ground is a film and dialogue faith-based program to raise awareness about the history and issues of racism in the United States. For more information, email Sarah Dowling.
- The Diocesan Racial Justice Council seeks to educate, advocate, and create or coach in justice liturgy for the diocese of Maine. For more information, contact the parish office.
- See the National Church's Beloved Community Website here and the report from the Presiding Officer's Working Group on Truth-telling, Reckoning and Healing prepared for at General Convention here
- The Justice Commission of the Episcopal Diocese of Maine convenes members of each of the justice councils in the diocese: Climate Justice, Committee on Indian Relations, Episcopal Peace Fellowship, and Racial Justice.
- The LGBTQIA Ministry works to support and celebrate same-sex marriage and truly welcomes all people. St. Luke’s has a long history of welcoming LGBTQIA members, being a leader in the fight for marriage equality, and being a proud participant in Portland PRIDE. The most recent LGBTQIA ministry has been through SAGE Maine. For more information, email John Hennessey.