Hernando pastor named 'food hero' by magazine
Nov 02, 2012 (Menafn - The Commercial Appeal - McClatchy-Tribune Information Services via COMTEX) --Hernando pastor and health-fitness advocate Dr. Michael O. Minor says he's surprised but pleased to be named a "Food Hero" in this month's issue of Cooking Light magazine. The publication, marking its 25th anniversary, lauds Minor for his local, regional, and national crusade against obesity.
Minor is one of 20 individuals recognized by Cooking Light for their roles in improving the national food scene. Other honorees include author and food activist Michael Pollan, New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg, Chipotle founder Steve Ells, chefs Jamie Oliver, Dan Barber and Grant Achatz, PepsiCo CEO Indra Nooyi and J. Kenji Lopez-Alt, a Food Lab columnist and co-creator of SeriousEats.com,
"Now that's an eclectic group: You don't see a Baptist preacher in that kind of crowd all the time, but I'm honored," said Minor. "I don't read a lot of magazines, mostly newspapers. This is a kind of off-the-beaten-path publication but they do have a wide readership across the country."
Minor launched his efforts in the late 1990s with a goal of helping his congregation at Oak Hill Baptist Church live healthier lives. Soon this effort spread to other churches through the collaborative effort of the Rising Sun Usher Federation, and about seven years ago, Minor led another expansion through the Healthy Congregations project of the Community Foundation of Northwest Mississippi and the National Baptist Convention.
In 2009, Minor was appointed to head his denomination's national health and wellness educational effort, the Health Outreach and Prevention Education (HOPE) program, and is leading a national pilot, funded by the Office of Minority and Health and the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services, to expand the HOPE Health Ambassador Training Initiative throughout the state of Alabama. This one-year effort will impact about 1,200 churches with an effective reach of more than a million people.
Minor also is president of the Mid-South Churches Cooperative Conference, based in Hernando, the Mid-South's newest National Baptist state affiliate serving nearly 20 counties.
"Being named by Cooking Light is just another affirmation that the answers to our problems such as obesity aren't in Washington, they're in our small towns and communities," said Minor. "And these efforts of ours that are reaching out nationally tie back here, where it all started. You can't forget about home."
For more information on area church-bashed initiatives, contact the Mississippi Faith-Based Health and Wellness Network at 901-826-8355 or visit the website at midsouthchurches.org/health_and_wellness.
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