Isaiah 6:8

8 Then I heard the voice of the Lord saying, “Whom shall I send? And who will go for us?”And I said, “Here am I. Send me!”

Sunday, June 27, 2010

Do You Know What a Pounding Is?

Well, I learned something new at church today.  When we got to church this morning I noticed food items in some boxes in the foyer.  I thought to myself, "how nice, they have a food pantry."  After church I learned that those items were for us.  The church had a "pounding" for us today.  I had never heard of this custom, thought it might be a Rock Mills things, came home and researched it and found out that it actually dates back to the Quakers.  How cool is that?  So I just had to share this something new I have learned. I had no idea what it meant, “A Pounding?”  My mind immediately went to fist fighting. I was not sure if it is a mountain culture thing or a southern thing or old church thing? But I learned it is definitely a HOSPITALITY thing and a wonderful one that at.   In all the research I did on the subject I discovered that they are quite popular for newlyweds and as bridal type showers.  I remembered back to my young married days and we were broke as haints.  On my first grocery trip I spent a grand total of 50.00 for a family of four for a week.  I was shocked at spending that amount of money.  Ronnies mom took me grocery shopping the next week and bought us meat.  SHE spent 100.00 on JUST MEAT!  We could have used a good old fashioned pounding back then...that is for sure.  Anyways, I thought you would be interested in this (if you did not already know, I didn't). I even found directions on how to give an Old Fashioned Pounding as a party.
1. Giving a pounding is an old-fashioned way to help someone by stocking their pantry with non-perishables foods or cleaning supplies. Usually a pounding is given to a bride and groom or family who just built a new home. The pounding can be mentioned on the invitation for the bridal shower or housewarming party.  Or, in a small community...just a few phone calls/emails will do it.
2. Mention the pounding on the invitations to the bridal shower or housewarming party. It could read, “We are going to bless Karen and Brother Frank with an old fashioned pounding. In addition to your shower/housewarming gift, please bring a non-perishable food item or cleaning supply from your own home. Contact hostess if you have any questions.” List any food/cleanser allergies here.  We did not get gifts of stuff...but we got a trunk load of food.  In the bags there were fresh corn, tomatoes, squash, cucumbers, as well as staple goods.  It was so exciting.
3. Prepare to have people ask you what a pounding is. In addition to describing what a pounding is, remind them that they don’t need to buy anything else, but just to give something they have extra. For instance, if they have 3 cans of green beans, they can give 1 can.  The original Quaker term came from....giving a pound...a pound of corn, a pound of meal, oats, etc.  Kind of catchy term....and real original don't you think? Now if you are really having a party...for say a new bride...you might do some major decorating.  This stuff was just waiting on us in the foyer.  Rock Mills UMC has been so kind to us.  This was AWESOME!
4. When setting up for the party, decorate grocery bags or boxes with leftover party decorations. Set the bags or boxes in a place that is convenient for the guests. Under the gift table is generally not a good idea, as the grocery bags or boxes can get in the way.
5. After the guest of honor has opened the other gifts, announce that they are being blessed with one more gift. Point out the groceries and explain that they are being pounded.
In the movie "Cross Creek," based on the life of writer Margery Rawlings ("The Yearling"), there was a reference to a "pound party." The guests each brought a pound of some food item. (I do recall this! I believe she brought a pound cake)  The origin of the term "food pounding" usually describes when a pastor is given food from the congregation.  When I did my research I found it under "pounding." It's like a gift "shower" or party. Also called "pound party." It is very common in eastern Alabama and western Georgia...and guess where Rock Mills is?  You've got it....it is 5 miles from the Georgia line...about as east as you can get. "The custom of sending to the minister's home groceries, preserves, etc., each participant being suppose to give a pound."  I like this custom.  We have now been here about a week and a half and the community has been so kind and loving.  I think I am going to like it here.  BTW...I sang in the choir today.  It was fun and has been a long time since I sang from a choir loft.  I loved every moment of it!

7 comments:

Mid-Atlantic Martha said...

Yes -- I remember my mother giving a pounding for some newly weds from her church -- it was lot's of fun to see the variety of what people brought.

Sweet Tea said...

I have heard of "Pounding" before but have never actually known anyone who was a recipient. It sounds wonderful. Obviously the people are thrilled and anxious to welcome the new Pastor and his wife. Was the "pounding" a surprise?

maddie/cadesmimi said...

Our area still has poundings, but we don't call them that. Some churches put out a basket or hamper, and it's members fill it for new couples in the church who are getting married. Now I know the official name for this act! It was so nice of your new church to welcome you in this way!

BoyBlue said...

I was married to a preacher's daughter. Our church held a pounding for the preacher almost every year. I was surprised the first time as I witnessed the pounding gifts when some church members brought out-of-date items and foods that not many dogs would eat including spoiled and rancid food.

In addition, there was no coordination of what to bring which resulted in enough same foods to last a lifetime and food that had to be eaten quickly or it would spoil.

However, many thoughtful church members brought the best foods that money could buy. Those members labled their food with their names... others did not.

The preacher, my father-in-law, shed tears of thanksgiving.

Jesse Price, Carrollton, Texas
Email: VideoAudioGuys@gmail.com

lighthousekingdomcity.org said...

We have been on both ends of this spectrum. Our church actually does this for families that are in need...anonymously of course. And I feel terrible for 'Blue Boy' who said that they were given rancid food...we have never experienced that. I cannot account for every well-meaning person who donates an out of date item. In fact, I wouldn't put it past my own mother. My parents are definately not poor, but they pay absoloutely no attention to expiration dates...ESPECIALLY if it is in a can! I have cleaned her cupboards out many times because of outdated things. If she has donated food, I can assure you that is is likely close to its expiration, but not out of malice. Even Christians make mistakes, or have a lapse in judgement.

I have written long enough, I was just doing some reasearch for our churchs' next food pounding and wanted to put my two cents in!

lighthousekingdomcity.org said...

We have been on both ends of this spectrum. Our church actually does this for families that are in need...anonymously of course. And I feel terrible for 'Blue Boy' who said that they were given rancid food...we have never experienced that. I cannot account for every well-meaning person who donates an out of date item. In fact, I wouldn't put it past my own mother. My parents are definately not poor, but they pay absoloutely no attention to expiration dates...ESPECIALLY if it is in a can! I have cleaned her cupboards out many times because of outdated things. If she has donated food, I can assure you that is is likely close to its expiration, but not out of malice. Even Christians make mistakes, or have a lapse in judgement.

Mom of Three said...

We just had a pounding for our new youth minister and his family. He said he had never heard of a " pounding". He also said that the actual event was much more pleasant than his first thoughts were when he first heard about it!