Harrah church members hope to grow free community meal

Every Wednesday night, around 60 people come to eat a free meal at Harrah United Methodist Church. Volunteers say their goal is 100.

Marty Fry, a HUMC member since 2000, started the weekly mission after he recognized a need.

"Somebody put the idea in my head and it wouldn't go away," he explained.

A cadre of congregational supporters help Fry and his wife, Kathy, with preparing, serving and cleanup. Fry said he believes that volunteers take part in the fellowship of the work and the meal just by helping.
"It is good to feed your community," said Callie Honious, who helps with the meal and contributes sides and desserts.

Honious said she is especially pleased to see a busload from the senior citizens' center comes nearly every Wednesday.

"It is a blessing just to see them enjoy our home-cooked meal," she said. "I would like to see more come to enjoy the food and friendship."

The donation plate is not out during the meal, and Fry does not accept any tithe or donations from the congregation.

"No one is to feel they must contribute," Fry said.

For some of the attendees, the Wednesday supper at Harrah UMC may be the only meal all week long they have in the company of others. Several workers think it's also good for the congregation to eat with the community in fellowship, saying the meal makes good use of the building's facilities.

"This church has always felt like home," member Jason Herndon said. "It is nice to be able to open up our home to others."

Lin Archer, Oklahoma Annual Conference

One of seven apportioned giving opportunities of The United Methodist Church, the World Service Fund is the financial lifeline to a long list of Christian mission and ministry throughout the denomination. Through the Four Areas of Focus churches are Engaging in ministry with the poor with their communities in ways that are transformative.