LANCASTER – Living Water Worship Center in Lancaster gave away boxes piled high with groceries to hundreds of residents in need recently as part of an ongoing effort to fill stomachs and hearts during the COVID-19 pandemic.
“We have been giving [away] food, showers, haircuts, and clothing while the coronavirus pandemic has been in effect,” said Senior Pastor Dwayne Jones. “We have been continuing to be open to help our community in need.”
Jones said his 85-member congregation with the help of volunteers have assisted between 3,000 and 5,000 people each month since March, when COVID-19 began to spread across Los Angeles County and into the Antelope Valley.
The local ministry hosts food distribution drives Monday through Thursday, and on Saturday. The drive-through service takes place in front of the Living Water Worship Center at 1111 West Avenue L-12 in Lancaster.
“It doesn’t make a difference where they’re from, we’ll take anybody who is in need… They don’t need a driver’s license or anything; if they come here having a need we will service them,” Jones said.
Jones, an Air Force veteran who retired after more than three decades of civil service, started Living Water Worship Center on New Year’s Eve in 2011. He said the ministry came out of a home bible study.
“We started on our living room sofa. God birthed the ministry and it continued to grow,” Jones said.
In 2013, the ministry moved to its current location in Lancaster. Since then, Living Water Worship Center has consistently distributed food and resources throughout the community, thanks to donations from big box stores like Walmart, Costco, and Target, as well as the Los Angeles Regional Food Bank.
“It’s been a venture,” Jones recalls. “We started with a small trailer — the wheels were bowed out — sometimes we didn’t know how we were gonna make it back up the hill coming [from Los Angeles] to Lancaster, but by the grace of God we have grown into where we are now and it was a journey.”
They’re now looking to expand grocery distributions to include “hot meals for the community’s homeless who can’t prepare food,” Jones said.
Asked why it is important for his ministry to give back to the community, Jones said: “Our community is who we are. If my community is hurting, I’m hurting; if my community is in lack, I’m in lack… God has blessed us and blessed this ministry so we have to be in the giving business. The bible says, ‘For God so loved the world, He gave His only begotten son,’ so because He gives, we give.”
To learn more about Living Water Worship Center and how you can help or donate to the ministry’s efforts, visit: https://lwwcofav.org/.