Serving a Holiday Meal and the Joy of the Season

Bishop Daniel E. Thomas and volunteers from several area churches served a Christmas meal to 370 people at Helping Hands of St. Louis on December 23.

Bishop Thomas read the account of Christ’s birth from Luke’s Gospel before blessing the food.  Guests were invited to sit down while volunteers served them a meal of ham, mashed potatoes, sweet potatoes, corn and desserts.

Jim Meads and Bishop Daniel E. Thomas serve a Christmas meal to Helping Hands of St. Louis guests.

Jim Meads and Bishop Daniel E. Thomas serve a Christmas meal to Helping Hands of St. Louis guests.

“It means a lot,” said Judy as her three-year-old daughter Hailey enjoyed a large spoonful of mashed potatoes.  Judy said her family sometimes needs help with food, and she is grateful for what is offered at Helping Hands.

Mr. Jones is another guest who comes on a regular basis for lunches.  He plays piano for worship at his church and said his faith is helping him through hard times.  “No one is going to be perfect, but we strive to be better … that’s why God sent Jesus and why He is the reason for the season.”

Mr. Jones appreciates the food and fellowship he finds at Helping Hands, describing the program as “God’s love being shared.”

The daily meals could not be possible without the help of dedicated volunteers.  Cheryl Sheffer, her son, John, and his children were all on hand to help serve the Christmas meal.  Both Cheryl and John volunteer at Helping Hands on a regular basis with their churches.

“I love these people,” Cheryl said.  “I always feel good after I’m here.  I am dead tired when I leave, but it’s a good tired.”

“When you live in the suburbs, you tend to get comfortable with your life,” John added.  “It’s good to be here with the people and share their burdens.”

In interviews with WNWO and WTOL, Bishop Thomas said he wanted to be part of serving the Christmas meal at Helping Hands because Jesus came as a poor infant in a stable.  As much as the poor need food and drink, what they need is the joy that comes from Jesus, he said.

Click here to learn more about Helping Hands of St. Louis.

 

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“A friend told me about La Posada. I came and I was surprised because it doesn’t look like a shelter. It looks just like a home. I was so glad when they told me we could stay. They’ve been so good to me. Honestly, none of this would be happening if I hadn’t been here. They’ve helped me so much.” – Marquita, La Posada resident

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Catholic Charities makes real the love God has for each individual regardless of faith or background, by serving the poor, speaking for and assisting the neglected and forgotten, respecting and promoting life from beginning to end, and nurturing and supporting individuals and families.

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