Stoke & Staffordshire

Coronavirus: The pastor delivering pizza to help a food bank

Matthew Murray Image copyright Kelly Ratcliffe Photography
Image caption From pastor to pizza delivery driver...

A pastor has swapped the pulpit for pizza as he started work as a delivery driver to raise money for his church's food bank.

Matthew Murray, 33, a senior pastor at the Uttoxeter Renew Church in Staffordshire, has started delivering for takeaway Sergeant Peppers.

All the money he earns through wages and tips is being donated to the food bank.

He said the food bank was "busier than it's ever been".

Mr Murray said he wanted to keep busy while other church activities were not taking place.

"We're heavily involved in our community... we basically run a lot of outreach for the whole town, but a lot of our regular activities are redundant due to the coronavirus.

"I thought I need to keep myself busy and get out and about and see people, so why not a bit of pizza delivering?

He added that the food bank had given out about 1,000 meals in just over a couple of weeks, "which is huge for a town like Uttoxeter - quite a middle-class town - but people are isolated, people are vulnerable, so we wanted to do all we could".

Image copyright Kelly Ratcliffe Photography
Image caption Matthew Murray's regular role as a church pastor has been hit by the coronavirus crisis

He added: "It's funny, some of my friends and people from the church have called and asked for me to deliver their pizza, so I leave it at their door.

"I just get to wave at them from 2m (6ft 6in) away, which is a bit sad, but it's better than nothing and I think it gives them some comfort."

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