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Community Christmas dinner put on by 80 area volunteers

December 26, 2017 GMT

Radiant Church was full on Christmas Eve, not only with area residents dining on a ham and potatoes meal, but also the 80 volunteers who helped put on the community event.

“I’ve gotten so much in my life, I want to give back,” said Dave Saya, a first-year volunteer.

He was serving up ham next to Lorna Kendall, who is in her second year of serving dinner at Radiant.

“I had my Christmas (with family) and this is a good place to be,” Kendall said. “Hopefully it will put a smile on people’s faces and make their Christmas a little better.”

The church volunteered to take on the annual community Christmas dinner in 2015 after Emanuel Lutheran Church had held it for the previous 25 years.

Emanuel continues to provide the community Thanksgiving dinner and was looking for another church to handle Christmas. Radiant was glad to take on the event.

“We are blessed. We love it,” said Pastor Jerry Theis. “When they offered, we were glad to take it. It’s one of the best things we do. I love the fact that all these people have a change to intermingle and we have an opportunity to share the love of Christ and be the hands and feet of God. It’s now become a part of our culture.”

With the dinner now at Radiant for the third year in a row, the church family is “finding its footing,” Theis said.

The first two went well. The third, even better.

Children even made homemade cookies and cards for visitors to take home with them.

“I think it’s wonderful,” said Dorothy Manley, who was dining with her brother, Charles Williams.

patti@ludingtondailynews.com

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