By Alison Gessner Rooney
Director of Programs
Food, Fellowship, and Friendship -across 27 different nations – including the USA.
Last Thursday evening, volunteers, staff, children and families of the Family ESL Program joined together for our Annual International Thanksgiving Potluck.
A best estimate is that 250 people total were in attendance – a new record!
Our amazing Volunteer Potluck Team, “Larry’s Team”, even rolled out two more large round tables as more eager guests arrived! (A big shout out to Joy, Larry and “The Team”.)
Women dressed in beautiful traditional clothing – children “dressed up” too – I saw ties and special sweaters and fancy dresses – bringing out the very best for this unique party invitation.
Together we enjoyed foods from all over the world, proudly prepared with loving hearts and hands, eager to share and make real a “tangible” from their home countries – now so far away.
Together we experienced a joy-filled talent show by the children of “Kids Club” – featuring acts as diverse as Michael Jackson and a traditional Thanksgiving song… (lovingly taught in the earlier weeks by Teen Volunteer, Hannah).
Together we enjoyed smiles and laughs – universal languages superseding any other (real or perceived) barriers…
Together we connected – with our hearts and through our presence.
Through the Family ESL Program (English classes for adults, educational support and activities for children) we are simply peacefully in proximity, rallying around a joint/shared goal.
We have the God-ordained opportunity (and thrill!), every Tuesday and Thursday evening, and throughout the year(s), to see and experience each other as more alike than different.
Together we not only seek a more harmonious world, we build one, in Jesus’ name.
At SON Ministries, TOGETHER, we build a more compassionate and caring community, (and world), one respect-filled relationship at a time.