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Church gives free lunches

First Baptist Church Mahan Street partnered with sponsor Southern Bank to give out 100 lunches to the community on Wednesday.

First Baptist Church Mahan hosted a drive-through lunch pick-up to give back to the community. The church plans to weekly host a lunch giveaway through the end of June.

“Our pastor came to us wanting to help the community during the pandemic,” said Mary Herndon, the office administrator. “The idea came up of feeding people once a week.”

The church started with 100 boxed lunches from Holland’s Country Gourmet. The local restaurant helped sponsor the lunch by giving the church a discounted price.

The lunch included a turkey sandwich, chips and dessert, and utensils and condiments were also provided.

“We want to support the local community, use local restaurants, serve local people, and help the local economy,” said Chris Beale from Southern Bank.

The church is able to rely on donations to make this happen due to the continued and extra giving during the pandemic. Even though the church has been remotely meeting through Facebook and YouTube, giving has not stopped. Due to an anonymous family donation, First Baptist Church Mahan can give lunches for the next four weeks without touching the regular church budget.

“We hope to be able to expand and give more than 100 lunches with help from our sponsors like Southern Bank,” said Helivi Holland, a trustee at First Baptist Church Mahan.

There were three hours set aside to give out lunches on Wednesday. However, the lunches ran out at the beginning of the second hour. During this short time, they were able to give out meals to essential workers, including nurses, dispatchers and families in the community.

The pastor’s wife, Brandey Blunt, delivered a few of the meals to members of the community she knew were unable to come on their own.

“It’s very nice to see the church doing this,” said J.H. Jackson III, chairman of the deacon board at First Baptist Church Mahan. “During this pandemic season, we want to keep hope and trust in the community. We want to do something positive and do what is necessary for the quality of life for our church members and community.”

Between 11 a.m. and 1 p.m. on June 17, the church plans planning to partner with Farmer’s Bank to serve Chick-fil-A while supplies last. The church is located at 112 Mahan St.