There’s a line down the block and around the corner right now at The Bowery Mission, where a white tent out front protects only some of those waiting to get in from the elements. Since 4:30 a.m., volunteers have been serving Thanksgiving meals with all the trimmings.
With all their locations combined, The Bowery Mission will serve around 7,000 meals today to people who are going through hardships such as being homeless. After a pre-meal sermon, a band played soothing music as the needy ate around red-clothed tables. Volunteers brought in water, tea, and plates full of turkey, gravy, and cranberry sauce. More →
The pantry at The Bowery Mission is bleakly bare. Where once enough food was stored to fill up the small shopping carts of the homeless who came in looking for comfort every two weeks, now the organization has to suggest its members come only once a month. It’s in “urgent need” of more food. More →
It’s not all that often that church pews double as theater aisles at The Bowery Mission’s Lower East Side Chapel but that’s what happened today, as local homeless men sought refuge from the single-digit temperatures.
Staffers set the thermostat above 70 degrees and unspooled a projection screen to show DVDs of The Bible, a 10-part miniseries that aired on the History channel last March.(The Blind Side was screened during a previous film session.) A few dozen men wearing hooded sweatshirts and nylon jackets watched stories of Jesus, Moses and Sampson before a backdrop of Christmas tree garland and organ pipes. More →
Mayor Bloomberg came by after the 8 a.m. meal and police commissioner Ray Kelly showed up a few hours later. But for the homeless and working poor people lined up outside the Bowery Mission on Thanksgiving Day, the glimpse of a VIP meant little compared to the prospect of a free turkey feast, a “blessing bag” of winter clothing, a new coat, and toys for the children. “People are nice here, very nice,” said a man shivering in a hooded sweatshirt as he waited to enter a tent leading to the Bowery Mission’s century-old chapel. “And the food is good.” More →