MERCER COUNTY, WV (WVNS) This time of year, many find themselves sitting around the table with their family, passing around dishes of warm, delicious food. But for some, the warmth of a holiday meal is not a guaranteed tradition.
In its 91st year, the Bluefield Union Mission continues to serve those in need of help around the holidays. As the prices rise for turkey, stuffing, and everything else that lines the tables around the holiday seasons, volunteers at the Mission were worried about what they could give out this year.
“But luckily one of our grants gave us a much better price than what we were expecting so therefore we was still able to buy the number we needed to serve the number expected but yeah it is still a challenge each year,” said Lonnie Quesenberry, the chair of the board of directors for the mission.
Neither the pandemic nor inflation could stop these volunteers from giving Turkey, pumpkin pie, and all of the other Thanksgiving Day dishes to those who cannot provide them for themselves. Their service is a staple around the community. More than three hundred people waited in line and left with more than just a meal.
“As long as I can remember, people, come here, it helps a lot of people out, not everybody as fortunate as everybody else you know it means the world,” said Derrick Fields, who was excited to go home and cook the meal he just received.
Quesenberry said he is never shocked to see all of the people who show up to help give out food but is always left overwhelmed with how many people want to give back.
“I know so many times people say, what is my purpose in life what does God want from me and you know and I think the word tells us he wants to love each other and care for each other and therefore I think that’s why you see all of these volunteers here today, that it does warm up our hearts that we can give up ourselves to help those who are less fortunate than ourselves,” said Quesenberry.
On Thanksgiving Day, the mission offers a hot meal for those who would like one. They began offering this meal on Thanksgiving Day during the pandemic and found it worked better for the mission and the people they serve.