Since 1975, members of CMM have been offering meals as a way to help meet some of the needs of the city’s many homeless people.
Various role players run meal schemes for the needy in the City, and CMM fills some of the gap by offering Sunday lunch at the Service Dining Rooms in Canterbury Street. A core team of cooks and servers are (by and large!) ably assisted by ad-hoc volunteers to serve about 250 balanced and nutritious meals every week. The meal offering is a small but clear response to Jesus’ call to meet the needs of the poor. We do this as an extension of our worship and discipleship, trusting that whatever we do for the least of our brothers and sisters, we do for Jesus. We also do this for ourselves: in transforming the lives of others, we too are transformed. The CMM volunteers invariably arrive home late for Sunday lunch reeking of onion, but tremendous satisfaction is found amongst the difficulties of co-ordinating amongst ourselves and serving a broad range of guests.
Food security is a cornerstone of how we organise our lives, and knowing where our next meal is coming from frees us to pursue almost all other actions. The food we offer makes a slight difference to the hungry and homeless. Of much greater value is the consistency of what we do: offering the certainty of a hot meal to those who might otherwise go hungry is almost as good as the meal itself. By turning up every week, we offer care, friendship and welcome in a city that ignores and rejects the homeless at every turn. By consistently offering up our time, we acknowledge their humanity and ours, and build small bridges across our city’s great divide between rich and poor.
Thanks to all those involved in this work.
Peace to you from Bruce & the SDR team.