By Valerie Marinoni
A few years back, I wrote a line or two about the joys of ushering, especially in the summer months when complete strangers often peek inside, attracted by the music. We invite them in, even if they just want to take a look.
The other day, I was thinking about refreshments – since it was our turn again. Of course, I enjoy baking – that’s part of it. But we are also privileged to have our church right in the middle of town where we can open the doors to “strangers” and invite them in to share our goodies and have a hot cup of coffee or tea.
For most of them, home-made cakes and biscuits are a far-off memory. It is just lovely to see the smiles on their faces when they are greeted warmly. Occasionally, I can greet an old friend whom I see regularly at the soup kitchen. Every Sunday, the children and young people are the first to arrive downstairs (!!) and one of the little ones once said to me how good it was to have enough food for the people on the street who don’t get many treats. Ah! There is someone with her priorities right! we are prepared for anything between 150 and 250 guests. Here, the joy is working in a jolly team, friends of all ages, chatting and chopping together, and then serving all this tasty food to people who, for some reason or another, need a free meal. For the past few years, we have welcomed new church members with a simple meal, a possibility to meet “older” members and to have a good talk. Preparing tasty soups and baking home-made bread have been on the menu each week during
Advent or Lent. I like to think it makes a difference to the way they become part of the family and feel at home here.Yes, it’s also part of our mission to widen the tent to all – friends, visitors, everyone – to bless them