Pictured from left to right, Mary Louise Blanks, Leah Stinson, Brenda Vowell, Betty Irons, Joyce Ervin and Rachel Evans prepared for God’s Closet to reopen on Saturday to being meeting clothing needs for school.
Pictured from left to right, Mary Louise Blanks, Leah Stinson, Brenda Vowell, Betty Irons, Joyce Ervin and Rachel Evans prepared for God’s Closet to reopen on Saturday to being meeting clothing needs for school.

The organization provides gently worn clothing to school children in Neshoba County at no cost. Two proofs of residency in Neshoba County and a child’s birth certificate are required to register. About 500 families are currently registered with God’s Closet.

Each child is allowed to choose a set number of items in each category every three months, including two shirts, one pair of pants and a new pair of socks. Children are also given a backpack, a pair of shoes, a belt and two jackets each year.




God’s Closet is a ministry of the First United Methodist Church of Philadelphia and was organized through the United Methodist Women.

According to God’s Closet co-chair Brenda Vowell, the program was started because the minister at First United Church of Philadelphia at the time believed God was calling on the church to help the community.

“Our minister had a vision that God wanted us to share clothing with children and families,” Vowell said.

The 11 members of the God’s Closet team work together on the first Saturday of each quarter and one person from the group is at God’s Closet every Saturday, working with one of 18 additional teams which help with the program.

Volunteer Mary Louise Blanks said she enjoys seeing children choose clothes they will enjoy wearing.

“If a child feels good about themselves, they will do better in school and in life,” she said.

Additional teams are formed by other churches and community organizations.

“The community here has supported us so well,” Vowell said. “We could not do what we do without the support we have received.”

God’s Closet co-chair Betty Irons said working with God’s Closet has been very personally rewarding.

“It has been so rewarding,” she said. “Being able to help so many children makes all of the work worthwhile.”

God’s Closet is open for shoppers from 9 a.m. to noon each Saturday.

Donations can be made at God’s Closet, which is located at 584 Main Street in Suite C-2, on Tuesdays, Thursdays and Saturdays from 9 a.m. to noon.