Pawleys Island Presbyterian Church has expanded its Bread of Life program to start a Tuesday noon meal in addition to the Monday meal served since September. Rick Russ, the member who directs the program, says the first Tuesday meal on June 8 served 60 people, the same number as ate June 7 in Founders Hall. This week, a record 72 were served Monday and 60 on Tuesday.
Russ says the Tuesday participants included several of those served Monday, although there were different faces Tuesday. The Bread of Life meals started Sept. 14, and 21 people were fed. By the third Monday, the number more than doubled to 45.
The second meal at the Presbyterian church provides a fifth meal every week to needy and elderly people in Pawleys Island. Precious Blood of Christ Catholic Church has a program, Father Pat's Lunch Kitchen, that began in 2007 and serves noon meals Wednesdays and Thursdays and breakfast on Saturdays. The Precious Blood program, named for the Rev. Patrick Stenson, now typically serves 130 people on Wednesdays, 70 to 90 on Thursdays and 60 to 70 on Saturdays. "We have seen an increase [on Wednesdays]," says parish coordinator Ellen Sullivan.
The numbers served at the two churches show the need being met. Volunteers from the church congregations prepare and serve the meals. Precious Blood volunteers every Monday bring food donated by Food Lion to the Presbyterian kitchen, Russ says. "They've been a Godsend." Bread of Life also regularly distributes bread donated by Lowe's Food and clothing brought in by members of the community.