If you or someone you know needs food assistance, counseling or even help with homelessness, Nativity Catholic Church, located at 705 E. Brandon Blvd. in Brandon, may be able to help.

Nativity Catholic Church, located at 705 E. Brandon Blvd. in Brandon, offers a variety of services that are not exclusive to its parishioners. The services are offered as a part of its Pastoral Care. Services provided include counseling, food assistance, homeless assistance and support groups.

The church has been offering services such as the food pantry for over 35 years. Others, like counseling, have been offered for over 20 years.

When asked why the church offers these services, Bonnie Ussery, director of Pastoral Care, said, “As Catholic Christians, we are called to be the hands and feet of Christ. We do this by ministering to those in our community who are in need and are hurting. We help them by sharing the love of Christ with them, by encouraging and enhancing the spiritual, economic and personal development of the people in the Brandon community.”

If you or someone you know is in need of assistance, Nativity Catholic Church may be able to help.

If you need food assistance, the food pantry is open on Thursdays at 1 p.m. It serves individuals who live in the following zip codes: 33510, 33511, 33596 and 33594. It is a drive-through food pantry, so you must stay in your car. The pantry is offered on a first-come, first-serve basis. The line starts at 12 Noon.

If homeless assistance is needed, then, as Ussery explained, “Our homeless ministry provides homeless bags with food and toiletries and other necessities such as blankets and rain ponchos (when available). We also partner with Family Promise of Hillsborough County to assist homeless families in need to regain their independence and dignity. Our Peanut Butter and Jelly Ministry makes and distributes thousands of sandwiches every two weeks to locations across the Tampa Bay area to organizations that assist the homeless and also makes up and distributes ‘goodie bags’ for the homeless three times a year that include socks, snacks, toiletry items and more.”

The church offers counseling as well. It has four licensed counselors who offer individual, couples, marriage, youth and family counseling.

The church also helps moms in need of baby supplies as well as seniors who may need assistance for their daily needs.

Finally, the church offers a six-week Group Bereavement session three times a year and a 12-week Surviving Divorce Group twice a year.

To get these services, simply call the church at 813-681-4608. You can also visit www.nativitycatholicchurch.org.

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