Churches Unite toFeed 3000

For more than 25 years, First Baptist Church has been delivering Thanksgiving and holiday meals to individuals throughout the community.

With everyone pitching in year after year, the event continues to be a success, with this year being no different. ]“Our goal is to show love and compassion to shut-ins and those who may not be able to afford a meal,” said Ken Hester, First Baptist’s pastor since 2000. “This reaches across all kinds of denominational, economic and racial lines and is great at unifying the community.”

Beginning initially as an exclusive project of First of Baptist, the project now encompasses multiple churches across the community uniting to make sure everyone has a full stomach for the holidays. Delivering most of their meals the week of Thanksgiving, meals include turkey and dressing, string beans, a roll, dessert and, of course, sweet potato casserole.

Pastor Hester said, “We strive to reach through the compassion of Jesus rather than the number. The key for us is to look beyond ourselves and actually see with divine compassion the need in front of us.

“We can easily get caught up in our own lives and miss the needs of our neighbors. The Feeding of the 5,000 enables us to travel outside our social circles and love on those around us with a practical expression of God’s love.”

In its first few years, the church delivered an estimated 500-700 meals. However, as the community grabbed hold of the event the number of meals normally averages closer to 3,000. As of November, the ministry has provided 2,784 meals.

Hester remarked that the point of the ministry is not to make First Baptist look good but to build up the kingdom of God and allow members of the community to God through their actions.

“At the end of the day, everyone feels good about it,” Hester said. “People are exhausted, but they know they made a difference.”

Source: Baptist Press