Welcome to Sister BJ's Pantry
The Pantry Creation
Sister BJ’s Pantry, named after its visionary Sister Barbara Joseph, and opened March 3, 2006. Sister BJ’s Pantry came to fruition following work with Rick Swyden, the ‘Hot Dog’ man, who started Hot Dogs for the Homeless of Oklahoma City. Through this work, Sister Barbara Joseph was shown the needs of the people extended beyond the hunger for food.
A small building in downtown Oklahoma City was leased, and the yard behind the building full of weeds was transformed into a beautiful flowering garden where a statue of the Mother of God holding Christ serves as a reminder we are all loved. This garden has become the focal point of the pantry, offering a needed peaceful respite for the local homeless and others in need. The Pantry is modeled after “The Corporal Works of Mercy”.
Those we serve
The pantry currently serves over 400 men, women, and children a week. Anyone in need is welcome. Pantry patrons include people who are without shelter and many who are struggling with poverty, loneliness, addictions or mental illness. Most have suffered degradation through their lifestyle or through experiences with community or family.
- People do not have to sign their names when coming to the pantry.
- There is no application, survey, or registration to complete in order to participate in the life of community at the pantry.
Ultimately, it is Christ Himself who is served at the pantry. He says, “I” … ‘was hungry and thirsty, naked, sick and in prison…’ It is the Holy Spirit leading and guiding. It is God the Father inviting us all to the life for which we were created, a communion in the life of the Holy Trinity.
We are so fortunate to have such a dedicated force of volunteers to help with this mission, from the very youngest members of our society to those giving back in their golden years. Here are some photos of our volunteers in action.