Uniontown church to share Thanksgiving meal with public
By Marilyn Forbes
Published: Saturday, Nov. 23, 2013, 3:44 p.m.
Reaching out to their friends and neighbors who would like to share a wonderfully cooked homemade Thanksgiving dinner, members of the Berean Seventh-Day Adventist Church in Uniontown once again are having their holiday meal and inviting the public to join in.
The meal will mark its 23rd year as a community event, which was started when church member Patience Barnes decided she wanted to celebrate the holiday in a different manner.
“I got tired of eating Thanksgiving dinner and watching football,” Barnes said. “I felt that there was more to life and more to Thanksgiving then eating and watching football all day.”
And Operation Jesus Feed was started.
The church began offering meals to anyone in the area who is homeless, unemployed, lonely, a senior citizen, low income or simply hungry, and over the years, the event has grown to where the church and the volunteers feed about 200.
“When we get here that morning, there are already people that are waiting,” volunteer Lucille Colbert said. “When we start serving, they are lined up around the corner, because we can't feed everyone at the same time.”
The event not only features a full dinner — the main entrée, mashed potatoes and sweet potatoes, numerous side dishes and fresh homemade pies — but a large area of the church is set up with racks of clothing, household goods and even furniture that is free to those in attendance.
“We get a lot of donations, and people from the church bring things,” volunteer Karen Nelson said. “There are people who look at what is there while they are waiting to eat.”
In addition to the meal, boxes of donated food items are given to families to take home to prepare their own Thanksgiving dinner.
“Last year, we gave out 80 boxes,” Nelson said. “My goal this year is to have 100 and have a turkey in each one.”
Nelson said she works on creating a nice table setting for each person, covering tables with a lovely fall setting complete with centerpieces.
“A lot of these people don't ever have a formal setting, and we want it to be nice for them for the dinner,” Nelson said.
“We don't want people just coming in to a bare table,” Colbert added.
The dinner is made possible by donations that are gathered throughout the year and by community contributions.
“We send out letters to the community, and churches in the area also help us get the word out,” Barnes said, adding that those who attend the meal are asked to sign a guest book to receive an invitation reminder for the meal the following year. “We see some of the same people and families year after year, but we always see some new people who join us.”
The meal is prepared and served by members of the church and other volunteers, with about 50 who turn out every year to help with the festive meal.
“It's a lot of work, but it is very rewarding,” Colbert said.
The Thanksgiving meal will be served from 1 to 4 p.m. Sunday in the church, 95 Searight Ave.
The meal is free, but free-will donations will be accepted.
Marilyn Forbes is a contributing writer for Trib Total Media.
Show commenting policy
TribLive commenting policy
You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.
We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.
While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.
We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers.
We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.
We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.
We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.
We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.
- Southmoreland seniors to don caps and gowns June 4
- Addison gemologist has keen eye for ‘wearable art’
- Uniontown man sentenced to 12 years for burglaries
- Brownsville Area Redevelopment Corp. chief ousted after 9 weeks
- Geibel 3-sport star enjoys tapping onstage
- Geibel musical director enjoys ‘group of very talented dancers’
- W.Va. woman in high-speed Fayette chase sentenced to 7 to 14 years
- Jury selection ends in trial for Fayette County boy’s beating death
- Dunbar Twp.’s Upper Sandy Hollow Road, Falls Avenue face repairs
- Fayette County residents sue over landfill fumes
- Masontown man sentenced in crash