Hundreds of people gathered at the St. Francis House to provide a warm meal to the homeless and celebrate Christmas.
In all, 350 people were fed Tuesday by more than 50 volunteers, with many of the homeless brought to tears, thanks to the kindness of complete strangers.
Karen LaFrazia, president of the St. Francis House, welcomed them all for the warm meal Christmas morning.
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"On Christmas morning, this is a message of unconditional love," LaFrazia said. "This is a place where we can find comfort, healing and an opportunity to be able to move beyond."
Salene Bourey was one of those overwhelmed by LaFrazia's message, and the selflessness of so many volunteers.
"I've been coming to St. Francis for about five or six years now," Bourey said. "It means a lot to me."
For decades, the St. Francis House has been serving hot meals to those who need them the most.
"It's hot rolls and cider and desserts, and people could eat until they're full," LaFraza said.
But, it's more than just food on the table, with many giving time on Christmas to volunteer, such as Caitlyn Hurley and her family.
"My grandpa always comes here," Hurley said. "He was like, 'Why don't you guys come?'"
In the end, many were able to serve food and talk with those who often feel forgotten.
"To be around people that share the same feeling and goes through the same stuff, and to have a meal with them, Merry Christmas," Bourey said. "It doesn’t have to be a package as a present. A package comes in love and joy. Show love, show joy. Be grateful, be thankful. Every day could be Christmas.”
The CEO of St. Francis House says she hopes the Christmas meal is an inspiration for everyone to give back and make others feel worthy and loved, not only on the holidays, but for every day of the year.
Cox Media Group