First free meal offered in Nappanee on Thursday

NAPPANEE In the height of winter, the thought of a warm home and a hot meal on the table is comforting for many. But for some in Michiana, that's a luxury not everyone can count on.

For this reason, a group of volunteers in Nappanee is doing its part to make a difference. The effort is small, but a new tradition they hope will grow.

The Nappanee Church of the Brethren is joining forces with Faith Mission to provide free meals twice a week to their community. Faith Mission, a service agency in Elkhart, will prepare the meals, and volunteers at the church will serve the food in Nappanee.

"The main objective is just to meet the needs of the people in the community," said Pastor Byrl Shaver.

The idea blossomed after Deborah Lehman, a board member at the Nappanee Church of the Brethren, volunteered at Faith Mission. She brought the idea to serve the community outside of their congregation to staff at her church.

"We're not set up to do a soup kitchen by ourselves," said Lehman. "That was our first idea but then we decided not to call it a soup kitchen because in the past people took that as a disgrace if you had to stand in the soup line."

Free meals are offered to anyone who wants to eat on Mondays and Thursdays from 5-6 p.m. at the Nappanee Church of the Brethren. The church is located at 301 Mack Drive in Nappanee.

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