Making Christmas merry

By Ed Brock

Ron Barnes ate his fill and took a plate of food with him from the Andrews Chapel United Methodist Church's inaugural Feed the Hungry & Homeless Christmas Dinner.

"Their macaroni and cheese was scrumptious," said Barnes, who lives in Jonesboro.

Large numbers of volunteers turned out at the Jonesboro church at 122 Watterson Street to cook ham, turkey, green beans, rice and Barnes' favorite, macaroni and cheese, for the dinner.

It was intended to fill the gap for people unable to get to the Hosea Feed the Homeless at Turner Field. However, only a few people like Barnes showed up to take advantage of the opportunity.

"So we said we'll go out on the highways and byways," said volunteer Robert Mitchell of Jonesboro. "We're going to take it to the people who are out there."

The volunteers had delivered some 300 meals to area homeless shelters, apartment complexes and to people on the street by 1:10 p.m., event organizer Flemming Thomson said.

For the few who did come in for the meal, volunteer Michael Montgomery also provided free haircuts.

"We're just allowing whatever talents we have to be used to help," Thomson said.