Hundreds of people lined up around Santa Barbara Rescue Mission for its annual Easter Feast.
The Santa Barbara Rescue Mission was established in 1965 with goals to provide emergency services and long-term recovery for the homeless and people suffering from addiction. In 2016, the Mission provided 143,051 meals and 51,627 safe nights of shelter for people with no place else to turn to.
The Mission fed more than 200 people on Holy Thursday. Mission residents cooked the meals.
“I’m real grateful for the meal just because it’s an opportunity to share with your fellow man and to celebrate,” said Manuel Robles, a Santa Barbara resident.
Robles used to run his own business before his mental health declined. He’s been on the streets for at least two years. Robles often turns to the Mission for shelter.
The Rescue Mission often extends invitations to the less fortunate each holiday.
“Easter is a very significant season for us and so part of it is extending God’s care and grace to people who find themselves in difficult times so people who are struggling with homelessness, or addiction,” said Rolf Geyling, president of Rescue Mission.
The feast would not be possible without generous donations from the community and volunteers.
“I think they all need love and a place to come to and fellowship and to be a normal person,” said Jeffrey Reinhart, a volunteer.
For more information on the Rescue Mission, click here.