To ensure that everyone enjoys
good company and a warm meal
this Thanksgiving, various Stevens
Point churches have joined forces to
host the 30th Annual Community
“It’s neat. It makes you feel
really good about the community,”
said Al Moen, senior pastor at Good Shepherd Lutheran Church of Plover.
The tradition began in 1984 and
three other area churches later joined
to accommodate the event’s growing popularity.
“It started here, but it outgrew this space easily,” Moen said. “After
it was here for a short period of
time, they asked to use a municipal
building, so they used that, but as
they became more involved with a
variety of turkeys, they realized that was too small, too. So then St. Brons
steps in and this thing really takes
Today, St. Bronislava Catholic
Church both sponsor and host
the event with the support of The
Spring United Methodist Church,
Beautiful Savior Lutheran Church,
and Good Shepherd. Moen described
the partnership between the four
churches as a wonderful endeavor.
Last year, the Community Thanksgiving Dinner catered to over
500 attendees, cooking 35 20-pound
turkeys and over 100 pounds of ham.
The event is also responsible for
delivering over 200 meals to local
residents throughout the community.
According to Moen, this is an
especially helpful service to those
who regularly rely on the national
organization Meals On Wheels to
supply them with food.
“Meals On Wheels closes for
Thanksgiving, so we have a notice
that goes out to those people who are
often receiving that that says, for this
particular day, call Good Shepherd,
and we’ll make reservations and get
the meal to you,” Moen said.
Mary Mahr, head of the Stevens
Point branch of Meals on Wheels,
appreciates the gesture.
“We do not deliver on major
holidays so we have established a
great relationship with the community
churches that do the Thanksgiving
dinner. Some call us and we make
the referral for them, others call for
themselves,” Mahr said.
Aside from providing individuals
with food, Mahr said the service
also serves an additional purpose:
“We find a majority of the people
that get Meals on Wheels say they
like the visit from the drivers more
than anything else,” Mahr said.
Moen also feels the event meets a
need in the community.
“It ended up being seen as
something that truly spoke to a
variety of different needs; from those
who were connected to Meals on
Wheels, to any individuals who were
hard on their luck, to people who just
wanted to be with a larger group,”
said Moen. “It’s been great. People
can come and have a great meal, and
don’t need to reserve a place.”