This program was started in 2007 to fill a need for the homeless and those in need in the downtown community on Sunday mornings. There were only a few souls (12) showed up those first few Sundays for juice, bagels and coffee. Since then, the crowds (as well as the menu) have mushroomed! We now serve 60-140 meals each Sunday.
The meal now includes sausage, eggs, hash browns, biscuits and gravy, hot and cold cereal, sweet rolls, orange juice and coffee.
First Lutheran Church is located at 138 West First Street on the corner of West First and North Wilkinson Street.
Breakfast is served from 8:00 – 8:30 a.m. which is followed by a contemporary Praise Service from 8:30 -9:00 a.m. for those who want to attend.
Since our congregation is small, five other churches send volunteers to assist us in preparing, serving, and cleaning up. They are: Dayton Church of the Messiah, Xenia, Sh’ma Israel, Dayton, Good Shepherd Lutheran, Kettering, St John’s Lutheran, Miamisburg, and the Living Word, Vandalia.
Volunteers from St. John’s provide the cooks and servers on the third Sunday of each month. These volunteers meet at the church at 6:00 am to carpool to 1st Lutheran or meet at 1st Lutheran Church at 6:30 am. The church is located at 138 West First Street on the corner of West First and North Wilkinson Street. There is free, on-street parking on Wilkinson Street at that time of day on Sunday morning.
For more information on how to volunteer, contact Pat Carroll at St. John’s or phone St. John’s Church Office at 866-3780 and church secretary Diana will see that Pat contacts you.
Project Blessing at St. Paul’s Lutheran Church
It began as a simple idea to serve a noon meal to those in need at the St Paul Lutheran Parish Hall. The year was 1978, and in order to meet the needs of people in Dayton, the East Dayton Lutheran Community Ministry was established by Pastor Paul Kampfe of St Paul Lutheran and Pastor William Schmidt of Hope Lutheran. An important part of that ministry was established on November 14th, 1979 - Project Blessing This important program began as a co-sponsored noon meal program by the East Dayton Lutheran Community Ministry and the Van Buren United Methodist Community Center.
After two years of operation, Project Blessing had served 9,000 people. By the end of three years, the number had risen to 15,000. By this time, nine churches were regularly participating in preparing and serving the meals. Forty nine different churches had participated at least once in the program - coming from as far away as Anna and New Lexington, Ohio.
St. Paul’s Lutheran Church is located at 239 Wayne Avenue
Additionally, the Clothing Room was added in 1983. Clothing is either sold at a minimal price or provided free to those referred by a recognized charitable program. The Clothing Room is stocked through the contributions from individuals, churches, and commercial businesses on a seasonal basis or when needs arise. This facility if available each Monday and Wednesday following the noon meal. St Paul volunteers keep the clothing stock in order, make necessary seasonal changes, and assist people who are seeking help.
Project Blessing exists entirely on volunteer efforts - people who are willing to give of their time and talent. The tasks of a volunteer fulfill many needs: the planners, the preparers, the dish washers, the doorkeeper, the servers, the stockers and the list goes on.
Today, the noon meals are still served every Monday and Wednesday. Over a quarter million meals have been served to those in need since that first November day in 1979
Volunteers from St. John’s provide the food (excluding the meat entrée), cooking and fill the plates and on Monday and Wednesday on rotation with the other supporting churches. St. John’s next schedule for Project Blessing is August, 2011. These volunteers meet at the church at 9:00 am to load the cars with the food and to carpool to St Paul’s Lutheran Church. St. Paul’s is located at 239 Wayne Avenue in Dayton. The church parking lot is adjacent to the sanctuary.
For more information on how to volunteer, contact Jackie Helter at St. John’s or phone St. John’s Church Office at 866-3780 and church secretary Diana will see that Jackie contacts you.