|Fish Volunteers of Cape Girardeau|
106 South Sprigg Street
FISH, is a not-for-profit agency serving
the Cape Girardeau area. With the help of churches like First Presbyterian Church, civic organizations and dedicated individuals
FISH helps 3,300 -3600 people a year right here in Cape. In 2011, FISH served 3,637 people which is close to what Fish did
in 2010 when Fish served 3,683 people. FISH relies heavily on word-of-mouth rather than organized solicitation for the food
that it distributes. During 2011, the highest monthly request for food served 381 people in June. The monthly record
was set in November of 2010 with 433 people served. As of November 2012, FISH has served 3372 people. The highest month for
people served was November with 428 people served.
FISH accepts any non perishable food item. While corn and green beans are needed,
the supply of these two items is usually overwhelming. The normal food items FISH needs the most are Macaroni & Cheese;
Tuna; Canned Fruit such as fruit salad, applesauce or sliced peaches; peanut butter; canned chili, ravioli, spaghetti; and
corned beef hash. For specific food items needed this month, call FISH (334-0207). However, FISH accepts any non-perishable
food item. FISH spent over $31,000.00 in 2011 on additional food supplies for the hungry.
Currently, FISH has ongoing 60 - 80 volunteers who help
answer the phones and actually fill the orders. However, they need more volunteers whose only requirement is to be able to
work only three hours per month. Volunteers answer the phone, fill grocery orders, and pick up food from donating organizations
and/or businesses. To volunteer, call FISH 334-0207.
Help must be requested by telephone. Access to the pantry
for assistance is by telephone only. The telephone number for FISH is 334-0207 and is listed in the telephone book under "Fish
Volunteers of Cape Girardeau". Anyone requesting help must be able to provide their social security number and/or other
The hours for FISH are 9:00 a.m. - 12:00 p.m. Monday - Friday.
Types of help FISH provides:
Food for the hungry. FISH provides food for one week
at a time depending on the size of the family. Normally, those served are limited to repeat only after 3 months. The groceries
are packed by volunteers and are ready for pick up at 106 South Sprigg Street. Pick ups are by appointment only. FISH accepts
referrals from churches, the Division of Family Service, and other social agencies.
FISH does NOT help with rent,
telephone or medical bills.
Donations to FISH are both in-kind and cash. FISH co-operates with all government, community
and private benevolent agencies.
HISTORY OF FISH
A. Why FISH started
1. Emergency needs often unmet by existing programs and agencies
2. Desire of local Christian churches to cooperate in helping ministry
B. How FISH
1. After one year of planning, FISH telephone ministry began May, 1980.
Official Name: FISH VOLUNTEERS OF CAPE GIRARDEAU , INC .
a. FISH is Greek acronym (IX0YC)
for "Jesus Christ, God's Son , Savior"
b. The fish was symbol used by early Christians to identify themselves
to one another in times of persecution .
c. The name FISH was chosen as a symbol of Christian caring toward those who
FISH has a Board of Directors which meets bi-monthly. There is also an annual meeting held every May.
OF DIRECTORS 2011
President: Rev. Jim Sanderson
Vice President: Paul Kabo
Secretary: Rene Boyer
Treasurer: Hugo Dippold,
Pantry Purchasing: Roger Scott and Rene Boyer
Telephone Coordinator: Joyce
Publicity & Food Pantry: Nancy Bray
Statistician: Harold Hager
Volunteer Coordinator: Ruthie Boxdorfer
Member at Large: Judy Jones
Member at Large: Sarah
Member at Large: Gary Metje
Member at Large:
Christian fish symbol has a long history
By MICHAEL HICKEY
Friday, April 24, 2009
In the early Christian community, one of the symbols that united
primitive Christians was the cross of Jesus Christ. Next to that, the ichthus, or fish symbol ranked as one of the most important
in unlocking the secrets of the mystery that became Christianity.
Clement of Alexandria
(150 A.D.) is the first early Christian church father to have specifically mentioned the fish symbol as pertaining to Christian
usage (The Pedagogue 3:11). He did not give an explanation for its use, which seems to imply that the Christian community
he was writing for understood the meaning of the symbol.
This symbol first brought to mind in the fledgling Christian
community the way Jesus shared a meal of fish with the disciples, on the shore of the Sea of Tiberius, in Galilee, after the
resurrection (John 21:11). But, it had a deeper, mysterious and more secret meaning.
The fish symbol references
an acrostic, consisting of the initial letters of five Greek words which formed the word for "fish" in the Greek:
ICTYS, pronounced ICHTHYS. It contained the Greek letters Iota, Chi, Theta, Upsilon and Sigma. To the early Christian community,
this signified, "Iesous Christos, Theou Yios, Soter," or in the English translation of the Greek, "Jesus Christ,
Son of God, Savior."
Several representations of the fish symbol can be found on the walls of the Catacombs.
It initially enabled Christians to identify themselves to each other in secret, because they did not want to be overheard
by their persecutors when they were worshiping Christ. The fish symbol enabled them to recognize each other without the need
for verbal communication. They then, could jointly, but silently, proclaim their profession of faith in the divinity of Jesus
When a Christian met a stranger on the road, one would draw one-half of the outline of the fish on a rock
or in the dirt. If the stranger drew the other half, both Christian believers knew that they could enjoy fellowship and freely
share their secret belief in Jesus Christ.
The fish symbol was also scratched on walls or rocks to point the way
to where Christians were meeting in secret, at ever-changing locations. A similar symbol had been utilized by non-Christian
Greeks at the time to mark the location of funerals, so the Christian usage blended with that one. The church father, Tertullian,
would later refer to the early Christians who were being baptized as, "Little fishes, after the image of our Ichthys,
born in water." (Baptism, Tert.1)
During the reign of the Emperor Constantine (307-337 A.D.), the persecution
of Christians ceased, as he declared Christianity to be the official religion of the state. The fish symbol seems to have
disappeared after the fourth century as Christianity spread and the secret of the "mystery fish" became more widely
known to the world. It has been revitalized once more in recent times.