Organization urges fasting, reflection to combat hunger

Published October 8, 2008

Fruits and vegetables are basic fare to some, but not for more 800 million people around the world who are still living in hunger, according to Canadian Foodgrains Bank.

Christians across Canada are being encouraged to join together in a day of “fasting for change” on Oct. 16, World Food Day.

Canadian Foodgrains Bank said its program, Fast for Change, seeks “a greater balance in the world where more than 800 million people are still living in hunger.”

Canadian Foodgrains Bank is a Winnipeg-based Canadian Christian organization of 15 churches, including the Anglican Church of Canada (represented by the Primate’s World Relief and Development Fund).

“We’re inviting Christians from all walks of life, all denominations, and all area codes in Canada to join with us on that day, to spend the time fasting and reflecting on the way we are all connected with each other and with those who are hungry,” said a statement by James Kornelsen, public engagement co-ordinator at Canadian Foodgrains Bank.

Aside from fasting, interested individuals, churches and groups can order a special seven-day reflection guide which offers Bible readings, reflections, and suggestions for action.

“Together we want to imagine the power of a small change,” said Mr. Kornelsen. “Imagine if we all made small changes in our lives that reflect what Jesus taught about loving other people as we love ourselves. Imagine the impact those changes would have on the way we live in our society – how we might spend more time with each other celebrating God’s abundance as well as being open and available to the needs of others.”

On the day of fasting, participants are encouraged to spend time in collective prayer.

“We’d like to see groups of people gathered around tables, sitting in community, saying a prayer together and reflecting on our connectedness to other people, to our Creator, and to the earth that we have been created to be a part of.”

Don Peters, executive director of Mennonite Central Committee and chair of the board of directors of the Foodgrains Bank, added: “We want to look at the day of fasting as an act of solidarity with the millions of people who can’t choose to fast. Let’s use it as a day to harness our passion and our energy to ensure that those millions become fewer.”

Established in 1983, Canadian Foodgrains Bank ranks “among the largest food aid providers in the world,” according to its Web site, In 2006, with budget of $24.8 million, Canadian Foodgrains Bank benefited 1.3 million people through 56 projects in 17 countries.

For more information or to sign up for the Fast for Change, visit


Keep on reading

Skip to content