Holiday mission declared a success
The Russellville Christmas Mission will return next year after the success of last Saturday's inaugural event at the A.W. Todd Centre.
More than 400 people were served a home-cooked Christmas dinner during the morning and afternoon, and 150 children ages 0-12 received Christmas presents that were donated through the Christmas Dove program.
"We fed 450 people and were able to provide 150 kids with a total of 300 gifts," said Dr. Wade Wallace, pastor of Calvary Baptist. "We were hoping to give each child one gift, but we had such a good response that we were able to give two gifts."
The non-denominational Mission was organized by First Baptist Church, First United Methodist Church and Calvary Baptist Church to fill the void left by Faith Mission Outreach, which closed last summer but will be re-opened next year by Calvary Baptist.
Wallace said the Mission was completely funded through donations from local individuals and businesses and assisted by volunteers from churches, school organizations and civic groups throughout Franklin County.
"We had all kinds of volunteers who helped out, whether it was serving dinner, distributing gifts or taking tickets," Wallace said. "I was amazed at the serving hearts shown by the community, and none of the churches were out any expenses for the dinner because of the generous donations from several local businesses.
"All we did was organize the Mission, and we want to thank each person who helped out."