Local church serves ‘pop-up’ Thanksgiving meal on downtown street

Bishop Barry Washington and his wife Pastor Camilla pose for a photo prior to the event.

Local church serves ‘pop-up’ Thanksgiving meal on downtown street
December 05
03:57 2019

Whole Man Ministries takes pride in serving the community through their outreach efforts. During the holiday season, those efforts are needed more than ever for some in our communities. To let the community know they were not forgotten during last week’s holiday, Whole Man Ministries partnered with others to feed those in need on Thanksgiving. The church set up shop in the downtown area to serve as many people as they could. 

This is the first time the church has done an outreach event like this, but after speaking with Steven Darling of Tromploy, a for-profit arts venture based in Winston-Salem, and Pastor Jeff Dowell of Our Father’s House Ministries, the idea simply took off from there.

“This is the first time we have done this and to come downtown like this to set up Thanksgiving for the homeless, those in transition, or even those who have a home but don’t have the means to pay for Thanksgiving, is humbling,” said Bishop Barry Washington, senior pastor of Whole Man Ministries.

“What really sparked this idea was Steven with his Alice in Winstonland and he came up with the idea and we began talking. My wife always wanted to do something like this and all of a sudden, in less than two weeks we put this together.”

To have the opportunity to reach out to those in need made it all “worthwhile,” Washington said.  

“This is great, because I could have been sitting around my table eating turkey, but to be able to come out here to help somebody else enjoy Thanksgiving, it actually becomes a greater Thanksgiving for me, because I’m able to come and make somebody else happy and smile and get a full stomach on Thanksgiving day,” he continued. 

Dowell says he met Washington through the outreach efforts that both men enjoy participating in. When the idea was presented to him, he jumped at the chance to involve his ministry with the event. Dowell also runs a recovery home called Bondage Breakers Outreach Ministries that caters to those recovering from addictions.

“This is what we do,” Dowell said. “Our mission statement is Matthew 25: 34-46: I was hungry and you fed me, I was thirsty and you gave me drink, and I was lonely and you came and visited me. He said when you have done it to the least of them, you have done it unto me.

“I have a heart for people on the street, because I was homeless at one point in my life and I had an addiction at one point in my life and I just want to give back and show them that they can come out of the same situation.”

Moving forward, Washington said he would love to make this an annual event. His wish is to include more community partners to make the event as large as possible.

“The more the merrier,” he said. “When you have a lot of community organizations coming together to make something like this happen, it makes it all worthwhile and I would love for this to continue on and become bigger.

“People are struggling, and people are going through things, so if we can give back and make a day like Thanksgiving pleasant for them, it does joy to my heart.”

Washington and the organizers wanted to thank all their sponsors that contributed to the food and clothing items provided.

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Timothy Ramsey

Timothy Ramsey

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