Country Thrift Store Offers Opportunity for Ministry, Helps Community

Once a place of worship, the use in ministry of the former church building continues with the New 2 U Thrift Store. Submitted photo.

Country Thrift Store Offers Opportunity for Ministry, Helps Community

RACINE, Ohio – A country thrift store has become an opportunity for ministry.

The Carmel-Sutton United Methodist Church decided in mid 2017, as they were getting ready to move to their new church building, that they wanted to give back in some way to to the community since God had blessed them. So, they opened a thrift store, New 2 U.

Linda Cunningham, one of the store volunteers, had a dream of opening a thrift store. She loves going to flea markets and yard sales. Plus she had volunteered at the Mustard Seed Thrift Store when it was located in Racine. Cunningham asked if they could open a thrift store in the former church building. She met with the ladies from the now closed Silver Run Thrift Store to get the details on how to get a store up and running. A lot of people she talked to told her not to get her hopes up too much because the store would be located out of town and folks might not come. But the group prayed about it and felt that God would lead them to success.

The New 2 U Thrift Store opened in October of 2017. The store operates entirely from donations from the church family and surrounding community. The New 2 U is operated by approximately 20 volunteers from the Carmel Sutton Church.

“The Store”, as it is affectionately called, is opened two days a week, Tuesday morning 9-11:30 a.m. and Thursdays 10 a.m. to 5:30 pm. The store is located at 32395 Bashan Road, Racine, Ohio.

Nancy Norris and Maxine Rose, both Store volunteers say the “Store is there to help those in need.” The mission of the store is “to share love with our family, friends, neighbors, church and community by, becoming the hands and feet of Jesus!” The work of the volunteers and those that donate make it a ministry that not only touches those locally, but has reached beyond Meigs County as well.

This mission work is funded by the items sold through the store that are donated. The store sells a large variety of items however they do not sell large furniture items. They also do not sell TV’s, electronics or computers.

In giving back to the community the store uses the money from the sale of items to fund activities and ministries such as the church Easter Party and the Halloween Trunk or Treat. Both of these events are opened to the community. The have also donated school supplies, personal products, laundry detergent, dental hygiene products and hair care items to customers of the sStore.

They have made donations to the Southern Local After School Meals Program, the Senior Citizens Center for Meal on Wheels. Back in December of 2021 they donated to the Kentucky Tornado Victims. The list also includes the Veteran’s Wreath Program, Tricia’s Kids and the Meigs County Farmer’s Market to name a just few of the places that have received donations through the simple thrift store. Plus they have gift cards available at certain times to help with travel expenses for doctors visits, and food gift cards to help feed families. They also maintains a Blessing Box that was located at the site when it was a church.

The Store Manager says they try to donate about 2/3 of the profit to missions and the remaining money is used to run and maintain the building.

The volunteers give not only their time but during the summer they bring in excess produce from their gardens to give to customers and they donate to keep the blessing box full.

If you would like to help by making a donations, bring your donations to the store during open hours or by dropping off at the drop-off area at the store. When dropping off in the drop-off area, please contact the phone number posted on the door.

For more information on the New 2 U Store, contact a volunteer at the store during operating hours or through their Facebook page, Carmel-Sutton New 2 U Thrift Store.