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franklin county times

FMO closed due to funding issues

By Staff
Melissa Cason
Something is different in downtown Russellville. It's not immediately obvious if you are not a frequent downtown visitor but if you are often downtown, the difference is there.
The thing that is different about downtown area is the Faith Mission Outreach is closed, and there is nowhere that people can just walk in to get food, or clothing or counseling.
Mission director Matthew Mangino said he had no choice but to close the doors of the mission due to the lack of funding to keep things going.
"It was getting to the point where we could not meet our own obligations such as paying the electric bill," Mangino said.
Mangino said he has not given up all hope and the mission is temporarily closed for now.
"I approached a church in Florence to partner with," Mangino said. "The church hasn't given us an answer yet, but if we do partner with them, we will be able to help more people than we've ever helped before."
Mangino said if the church decides not to partner with them, then the mission will close for good.
"We have almost no regular support from the community," Mangino said. "Only two churches in our community help us our financially, and we can't feed people if we don't have the money to buy food."
Mangino said the mission would have already closed its doors if it were not for Calvary Baptist Church.
"Calvary has supported us, and continues to do so, but it's not enough. The need is just too great," Mangino said.
Mangino expects an answer from the mission's potential partner next week.
"They are praying about it and we'll see what they decide to do," Mangino said.
The mission has been a part of the downtown Russellville for over five years, and in that time, Mangino and his volunteers have served food to the hungry, and provided clothing for those without descent clothing.
In the weeks since the mission's clothing, local churches are reporting this as a busy time for benevolence requests but that isn't really out of the ordinary.
Officials with First Baptist Church of Russellville said they have not seen any spike in requests in the last few weeks.
Officials with First United Methodist Church of Russellville also reporting a busy time for those asking for help, but they couldn't be sure that there were more due to the mission's closing.
While the difference in the downtown appearance isn't noticeable to an average person, it is noticeable to the hundreds of households the mission helped on a weekly basis