Friday, December 09, 2011

Simple Goodness

This evening we will begin our second year with The Gathering Place meal at St. Paul's. This is a Bowmanville ministerial initiative and it wouldn't happen without the hard work of volunteers from a number of congregations, including ours, who make the meal and set tables and run the dishwasher.

Just the same, I will be a "homer" and express my appreciation of a number of our folk this week. A St. Paul's couple approached me recently about providing a Christmas gift for every person who attends today. They showed up with three big crates of chocolates, one hundred and forty gifts for our guests. I had a chat with Santa Claus yesterday (the Bowmanville Santa Claus Parade Santa worships with us) and he will be here to hand out the gifts. And yesterday someone came to my study door saying that her extended family makes a gift to a worthy cause each Christmas so The Gathering Place would be the recipient this year.

Good hearted people who don't ask for recognition -- it's downright Christian.



Nancy said...

These truly Christian acts of generosity brought a tear to my eye. Lovely to hear.

Nan said...

This is a very worthy cause and I know that even though many churches are involved, monetarial donations are also most appreciated. At the afternoon Carol Fest being held at Trinity on Dec. 18, featuring choirs from both St. Paul's and Trinity, there will be a free will offering received to benefit The Gathering Place. Also, when I entertain at this time of year either on my own or with some helpers, I'm often offered a donation to a charity of my choice. This year I chose The Gathering Place. I have been and seen what it means to those who come for the food and the fellowship and am delighted to tell others of what it is and what it means, not only to those who partake of the meal, but to those who help in the many ways to make the meal possible.

debbie said...

I went to The Gathering Place for the first time yesterday and it moved me. I stood at the door and watched as people -- strangers -- were not only welcomed but embraced and called by name. (What a wonderful idea that everyone wear a nametag.) Gazing around the room that was filled with the joyful noise of laughter amid conversation; it was a happening place! The folks who were doing the serving were happy to do so and it showed. And the folks who were being served were happy to be partaking in what very much felt like one large family eating dinner, together. Not lost on me was the smile on Rev. Mundy's face and rightfully so! What a wonderful success story, and I'm not sure yet who gets more from the experience; the people serving or the people sitting but I can tell you they will be back and so will I.

lionlamb said...

Thanks for all these comments, including your first-timers impressions Debbie. I know that the preparers and servers would agree with your assessment and the guests love it.

I have to tell you that the reaction of the people to Santa was amazing. One woman who was grousing away through the meal (there aren't many complainers)lit up. Santa went to every table and people responded as though it was Sidney Crosby. The grumpy woman said that she believed in Santa and Jesus -- did he? He does!

When he left he waved and wished everyone a Merry Christmas. The crowd waved back and shouted out their goodbyes. It was a heartwarming moment I won't forget.