All invited to Victory’s Christmas dinnerIn the spirit of the season, Victory Lutheran Church will once again open its doors and its heart to the community by serving a free Christmas dinner from 11:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. Sunday.
By: Kari Lucin, The Jamestown Sun
In the spirit of the season, Victory Lutheran Church will once again open its doors and its heart to the community by serving a free Christmas dinner from 11:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. Sunday.
The annual free meal, now in its ninth year, was inspired by Concordia Lutheran Church’s annual Community Thanksgiving Dinner.
“I saw Concordia was doing such a good job for Thanksgiving and no one else was doing anything for Christmas,” said the Rev. Shawn Bowman, senior pastor at Victory. “I just wanted to do something in the name of Jesus for Christmas, for the community.”
Over the past nine years, the Christmas dinner has doubled in size, and even in the past two or three years, numbers have gone up.
“This year, we do expect a bigger jump … greater demand for homeless and hungry people,” Bowman said.
He expects to serve 500 to 600 meals this year, up from last year, and the church has ordered 30 turkeys — six more than were roasted last year.
“We start on Saturday afternoon and cook, basically, through the night, so Sunday all these turkeys are cut and ready to serve,” Bowman said.
The meal also includes all the traditional Christmas side dishes — dressing, mashed potatoes, gravy, cranberries, green bean casserole, corn, rolls and home-baked pies and desserts.
The community dinner is a massive undertaking and requires a small army of volunteers — between 80 and 100 people, from Victory and the community-at-large.
More volunteers are still needed, particularly those willing to help with cleanup or delivering meals to shut-ins.
“We could always use volunteers in the kitchen on Sunday,” said Kris Meidinger, who coordinates the volunteers. “We always need drivers.”
Last year, 189 meals were delivered to people in the community who could not attend the Christmas dinner in person. Unlike dining in, deliveries should be scheduled.
Anyone who can drive to the meal is asked to do that rather than requesting a delivery, but people who are homebound should call or leave a message with the church office at 251-1570 to arrange a delivery.
People volunteering to deliver Christmas dinners should bring their cars and a cooler or boxes to put them in. Drivers will take four to six meals at a time to one area of town, Meidinger said.
“A lot of (homebound people) cry, even when they’re calling to order the meals,” she added. “… (the Christmas dinner) blesses a lot of people, and that’s the reason for it.”
Anyone who wishes to volunteer should call 251-1570.
“Everyone is welcome, and it is a good meal,” Meidinger said. “We get rave reviews.”
Sun reporter Kari Lucin can be
reached at 701-952-8453
or by email at