‘We want you to come in and feel like family’: Mission sticks to familiar traditions | News – Bakersfield, California

Bakersfield, California 2021-11-25 16:30:00 –

Like my own home, this meal preparation began long before Thanksgiving.

As with home, Kern County mission staff and guests visited the neighborhood of Kern’s Old Town and invited people to attend a hot dinner, so an invitation was given in advance.

Like my own home, traditions such as turkey, mashed potatoes and gravy, stuffing, green beans, freshly baked bread rolls, and pumpkin pies were preserved.

Certainly, there are many variations of themes. Tamale, lasagna and pierogi can decorate the table, but the spirit of the holidays applies. “We want you to feel like a family,” said Carlos Baldovinos, executive director of The. Mission.

And on Thursday, about 600 holiday meals will be offered to clients of the mission’s homeless intervention services and addiction recovery programs, the surrounding community, and those who are actually food and love hungry. Everyone was welcomed and volunteers arrived together to make it happen.

“We want everyone to feel equally loved,” said Jamie Durham, Director of Community Development for the mission.

At a festive table, six-year-old Paisley Evans touched her mother’s hand and Marlene Evans shared her journey.

“I was homeless and suffered from my selfish needs,” said the four 41-year-old mothers. She said she was stubborn, but the women’s program on the mission went well on her path to “clean up” her, safe, protect, and rebuild relationships. She said she would graduate from the 18-month program in April.

23-year-old Courtney Merrell found a family here.

“I’ve been couchsurfing for about five years and finally found what I could call a home,” said Merrell, who is having dinner with her three-year-old daughter, Kendal Merrell, and is participating in a program for women and children. Told. One year mission.

Until then, she was at the hotel and knew she needed to change something. She googled for “female and children” — and it was. She found a mission. There she found people who helped her change, enrolled in college courses, and emphasized. There she found God and Jesus Christ.

Christmas music filled the air — it can’t be too early! The tables and racks were full of coats, socks and hats for those who needed them. During meals, and in tents outside the Christian Education Chapel, prayers were offered for those seeking one-on-one spiritual support.

Because, in words and actions, we all crave little love. A little peace. A little friendliness.

Some families find their Thanksgiving feelings around a formal holiday table, full of candles, gorgeous cutlery, and carved turkey. Some people play basketball and soccer on a busy autumn morning. Some people watch the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade in their pajamas.

Like my home, I found a familiar tradition on Thanksgiving Day missions in Kern County.

‘We want you to come in and feel like family’: Mission sticks to familiar traditions | News Source link ‘We want you to come in and feel like family’: Mission sticks to familiar traditions | News

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