Community Meal

Monthly Community Meal Potluck

Upcoming Meals: Thursdays May 25, June 22

Going on its second year, simple church hosts the monthly potluck Community Meal with Family Place. A program of Upward Bound House, Family Place provides transitional housing and intensive wrap-around case management for families with minor children in crisis. Traditionally, homeless shelters separate men and women; Family Place offers a unique model maintaining the family unit intact in separate apartments. They serve about 50 families per year and achieves superlative outcomes. Over 95% of the graduates of Family Place have remained in permanent, self-sufficient housing for at least a year after graduating.

The annual First UMC Angel Tree program in December provides the necessary home items such as towels, bedding, and cookwares. Families are then able take their items with them into their new homes once they have graduated from the program.

The Community Meal potluck is an opportunity to help feed about 30-40 adults & children, served buffet style. Attending the potluck not only provides a delicious meal for the families and allows the parents an evening free from cooking dinner but is a way for all who attend to be a part of a warm and accepting community.

Invite your friends and join the next potluck for an evening of conversation, crafts/games with the kids, and a shared meal.

For more information, contact Co-lead Volunteers Anna Rogers & Dan Stirling by emailing meal@santamonicaumc.org or call the church office (310) 393-8258.


Many Thanks for the 2016 Thanksgiving Community Meal

This year’s Community Thanksgiving Meal that was held on November 23 in Simkins Hall was a huge success! Families from Upward Bound House’s Family Place and Family Shelter were invited to come and share a Thanksgiving meal provided by congregation members and friends of First UMC. With 12 turkeys and a boat-load of side dishes, there was more than enough to feed all the families. The meal was truly a spirit-filled evening of service and relating, centering on the sacred act of sharing a meal. We thank all of the volunteers that brought food, set up and cleaned up. It wouldn’t have been possible without you! img_2342

Here are some reflections of the event:

Working together with all of you was one of the true highlights of my Thanksgiving. Kim Defenderfer

What a celebration of love and abundance. The quality of food brought to this feast was heartfelt. What a blast making 40 pounds of vegetable mashed potatoes with “My Girls” in the church kitchen. And….let’s hear it for the clean-up crew!!!! Talk about transformation. Our gravy bowl runneth over! Cindy McQuade

It feels like my heart grew a size bigger after spending this wonderful evening with everybody. Together. Thank you for that gift. Daniela Skrein

A great night full of food, laughter, new friends and gratitude. I hope to do it again next year. Anne Premer

At one point, while running in and out of the kitchen, I witnessed my daughter trying to help my husband serve food. I thought she was doing activities with the other kids but there she was. During dinner, we sat with a family from Family Place and some other volunteers. We really enjoyed the evening with delicious food and good conversation, building community and giving thanks. We look forward to doing it again next year. – Shalimar Carducci with June and Brett Carducci