Christmas came a few days early for 100 of Spokane’s low income and homeless residents on Wednesday evening, where volunteers served a warm holiday meal, Santa brought presents and children performed in an off-the-cuff pageant.
According to the Holy Trinity website part of the HT Dinner Table’s mission is to, “Welcome guests as we would welcome them into our homes; we serve food that we would be proud to offer our friends and families. We provide family and children’s activities before and after the meal. We know each other by name, we share in each other’s lives, and we care for one another.
Wednesday’s meal was the last until 2013.
The Rev. Kris Christensen said gifts for the guests were provided by church members, HT Dinner Table volunteers (which includes people from various organizations) and local businesses, including Wonders of the World. She said those who attend the weekly dinner include individuals from Spokane’s low income, homeless, disabled or elderly communities.
Christensen said the program, which has been operating since 2008, isn’t a success simply because of the food.
“I think it’s because of the way we do it. They’re not used to being treated with hospitality and respect,” she said. “The volunteers sit down and eat with the guests.”
One woman, who goes by the name Ricochet, said she’s been dining at Holy Trinity since the Dinner Table program first launched.
“I love it,” she said. “They never serve anything I don’t like. The people are beautiful.”
The people are especially delightful, she added, during the annual Christmas dinner.
Katie Hancock, a student at Spokane Falls Community College, has been volunteering at the weekly event since October. She originally came as part of a class, which has ended, but plans to continue serving at the church.
“I quickly fell in love with all the people, so I want to keep coming,” she said. “Everyone really loves each other. It’s a great place to be. Spirits are always high…”
More photos of this event can be viewed on our Facebook page.