Anderson church offers free community dinners for needy
August 8, 2017
Updated: August 8, 2017 1:04am
ANDERSON, Ind. (AP) — As soon as Louis Jackson Jr. discovered people were living in abandoned homes and a woods nearby, he knew it was time to offer more.
Free school supplies, food, pony rides, a petting zoo and vendors with freebies will be at this year’s bash at noon Saturday at the church, 538 E. 31st St.
That giving spirit will continue with the monthly meals, said Jackson, senior pastor of the church.
“We’re in the community and any way that we can help the community, that’s Christ being seen,” he said. “So this is our way of taking Christ and letting him be seen any way we can help because we’re part of the neighborhood.”
The church has toyed with the idea of offering a free meal for years, but feedback from attendees at the church’s giveaways and the congregation highlighted the need.
“One of the things we found out was we heard that the Christian Center is the closest place most of them can get to, but sometimes eating downtown is not as easy,” church administrator and Elder Louis Jackson III said.
Although one meal a month may not seem like much relief, Louis Jackson Jr. said it chips away at food insecurity. He compared it to an old story of a boy walking along the beach after a major storm washes thousands of starfish onto the sand. As he tosses starfish back into the ocean, a naysayer comments that he won’t be able to make much of a difference.
But to each individual creature the boy saves, it will mean the world.
“We have to be what we preach,” the senior pastor said. “Our faith is in God and we believe this is his…