Faith Matters: Greenville Church Feeds Children Physically And Spiritually


By Catalina Trivino

Members of a church in Greenville are reaching out to serve children in more than one way -- feeding them both physically... and spiritually.

It starts with a simple invitation to lunch -- kids get the chance to eat at First Assembly of God throughout the summer, but they also get a taste of the word of God. And some people say it's coming to lunch that's changed their lives.

Julie Davis is a mother of 4. She and her family were victims of Hurricane Katrina in 2005 and have lived in Greenville ever since.

"We didn't really have a church or a place to go and hearing about the free lunch over here just made us feel more welcome than we've ever felt anywhere else before," Said Davis.

First Assembly of God is one of 11 sites in Greenville that provides free lunches for children. And while the lunch is paid for by the city, the labor is not.

Members at this church are feeding dozens of kids every day for eight weeks.

"These kids that come in they have nothing to offer us except their love and we give our love back to them and we just love it. It's awesome," Said one youth pastor, Jason Simmons.

"To be His hands and feet to reach out to people that they've gone though a hard time and we maybe somehow give them some hope," Said another youth pastor, Keith Simmons.

And while coming here for a simple lunch is what started it all, Davis says it's changed her life.

"I didn't really have a strong belief in God at first, but coming here and listening, how they treat the children,how they teach the children prayer and everything it's just a wonderful feeling. I've accepted God into my life more than anything. And it's just amazing," Said Davis.

Davis say she's been so touched by what these volunteers have been doing that as of last Sunday, she too has become a member of the church. Members say the bigger picture of all this is not an invitation to lunch, rather an invitation to love.

Children can be fed at First Assembly of God's Food Outreach all summer long, Monday through Friday between 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. Parents are invited to listen to message of the day.