Community members come together for a special Thanksgiving holiday dinner

SOUTH BEND, Ind. – The First United Methodist Church in South Bend partnered with Café Navarre on Wednesday evening to provide an early Thanksgiving meal to the community.

Over 300 people showed up to the Downtown Soup Kitchen to receive a warm, free meal prepared and served by volunteers.

This annual tradition remains successful due to the community’s involvement and contributions.

Matt Landry, a pastor at the First United Methodist Church said, “It’s a great opportunity to be here to build relationships, to serve others, but also to be able to reflect on your own life as well. So I think that’s the gift for those who come and eat, but also for those who come and serve as well.”

The Director of Operations for Navarre Hospitality, John Dawson, also commented saying, “I mean, you look at this room and it’s almost full and it’s a lot of people just here for the same reasons, so I think that alone helps bring the community together.”

Previously, all the food was prepared by local volunteers, but this year, the partnership with Café Navarre allowed for more meals to be prepared and served to community members in need.

Though this event happens once a year, the soup kitchen provides services to those in need all year round, relying on community donations to continue their mission to provide sustenance, companionship, and hope for those in need.

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