By David McCaig, Pastor at Peterhead Baptist Church
Rising food and fuel costs have left people across the country anxious about the winter ahead. With the raising at BUS council of the question of what the Church can do to help in the face of this looming crisis, we at PBC proposed opening our building to provide a warm space, some company and a cooked meal for anyone in need in our town.
Thanks to the overwhelming response of a significant group of active volunteers, we have been able to do just that.
From 2pm to 4pm, Monday to Friday, we provide soup, hot drinks, newspapers, magazines, games and conversation. From 4pm-6pm, we serve a main course and a dessert too.
Social media has been important for spreading the word, but we have also prepared leaflets and several local authority agencies have been active in passing the details onto those who need them.
Since our first night on the 31st of October, we have had between 6 and 20 guests each day, from families to the elderly, and every demographic in between.
The benefits for the church have been wide-ranging. From the support we have received from other churches in the town and connections made with secular agencies around us; to the deepening of relationships within the teams serving each day, and of course, the new relationships that we are forming with those we have been delighted to serve.
Ultimately, however, the whole motivation for this initiative has been to share God’s love. As we remember and apply 1 John 3:18 (“Let’s not merely say that we love each other; let us show the truth by our actions”), our prayer is that through this initiative, more people in our community will recognise the compassion, provision and hope that is found in the Saviour that we serve.