Green Thumbs Working for God’s Mission

Jun 5, 2024

ABM recently received the following report from Dennis Mann, a parishioner at Holy Trinity, Launceston, about the parish’s efforts in support of God’s mission.

Holy Trinity, Launceston, has been fundraising for ABM for many years, most recently through a series of garden stalls selling excess fruit and vegetables from parishioners’ gardens.  This has been augmented by sales of jams and preserves. pickles and chutneys, home-baked scones, biscuits, cakes and slices, plants and an annual trash and treasure.  Our 2023-24 series of 10 stalls raised over $7,400.

The first stall in early November is generally for seedlings and plants. Towards Christmas we sell Lions cakes and puddings as well as our own festive goodies.  Stalls in January, February and March abound with fresh fruit and vegetables — anything that our green-thumbed parishioners have in excess – tomatoes, zucchini, beans, potatoes, pumpkin, but also hazelnuts, passionfruit, berries and figs.  Occasionally, we will get Jerusalem artichokes, quince, Asian greens, aubergine and chilli. Generally, our prices are set at half what the local supermarkets are charging.

All-time favourite jams include strawberry, apricot, raspberry, cherry and plum but on occasion we also turn out more exotic flavours like tomato and passionfruit, carrot and lemon marmalade, rhubarb and apple, and feijoa and crab apple.  For the savoury-minded we have real tomato sauce (Mr Heinz, eat your heart out), tomato relish, ginger and pear chutney, lemon cordial, pickled onions, and basil pesto, to name but a few.

Our last stall in April has always been for the sale of Anzac biscuits. Every year six different servicemen named on our magnificent War Memorial feature on special commemorative boxes detailing their war record and connection to Holy Trinity. This year we sold 100 boxes.  In addition, this year we introduced a Once Loved and Treasured stall which certainly attracted the customers.

We are fortunate in being on a major access route to the Launceston Farmers’ Market and many of our customers check us out first. Tourists are delighted to buy truly local products and take advantage of visiting our historic Holy Trinity church.

The Garden Stalls are not really hard to organise, and we have a lot of parishioner support, making it a real team effort.  Goods are usually delivered to Holy Trinity during the week prior and sometimes on sale day. I also collect on Friday afternoons and organise prices, signs, etc.  The sales team set up at 8am and we close around 11am.  We have four tables – two for fresh fruit and vegetables, one for baked goods and jams/pickles and the last one for plants and cut flowers.

The stall has been a great meeting place and lots of locals and tourists stop to buy and chat. This is an opportunity for spreading ABM and Holy Trinity news.  The Church is open and gets a steady stream of visitors, some of whom come along to Morning Service on Sunday.

ABM congratulates Dennis and his team of talented and willing volunteers on the success of their garden stalls. They show that God has a place for all our different talents in seeing people everywhere come to enjoy the abundant life that Jesus promises us.