The wagons and truckloads of grain lined up for blocks around Trinity Lutheran Church, Ellsworth, Iowa, aren't there every Sunday, of course. But they are there on Harvest Festival Sunday, when farmers don't drop a check in the offering plate but offer grain by the truckload.
Trinity, a big brick church in this central Iowa farming town of 450, celebrated its centennial 25 years ago by asking farmers to donate grain as a thankoffering for a century of service and faith. The grain represents not only the area's heritage but the biblical tradition of offering firstfruits of the field (Exodus 23:19).
October's offering was enough to bring the 25-year total to more than $1 million.
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