The Allentown Rescue Mission’s 2020 Thanksgiving: Altered but Not Disheartened

Like most Americans, the Allentown Rescue Mission reconsidered its Thanksgiving plans this year. The Allentown Rescue Mission celebrated with a modified version of its traditional turkey dinner to ensure the safety of everyone involved. And while protocol was different this year, the meal provided the men with the same sense of gratitude as in years past.

Serving a hot holiday meal is an annual tradition at the Allentown Rescue Mission. With COVID-19 restrictions in place, the large family-style meal served by staff and volunteers was abandoned. Instead, individually boxed dinners were delivered to the rooms of Clean Team and Transformation Program men. Guests living in the emergency shelter ate a socially distanced meal on a separate floor. Although volunteers have been temporarily discontinued and staff interacting with the men limited, the employees of the Allentown Rescue Mission worked diligently to ensure the men felt cared for and loved as in previous years.

Still, 2020 has been especially complicated and challenging for the homeless men living at the Allentown Rescue Mission. The Mission’s Transformation Program asked its men to participate in a Thanksgiving exercise. The men reflected and shared the good in their lives, and wrote it down as a reminder of what to focus on during these difficult times. Many men expressed gratitude for what God has provided them, and others were grateful for a roof over their heads.

The Thanksgiving lists were a powerful reminder that even in the most trying times, we can choose to focus on the good that we have, rather than on what we are missing. The Allentown Rescue Mission would like to thank all of its donors and partners for their boundless generosity. Thanks to them, the Allentown Rescue Mission exceeded its Thanksgiving goal of 5,333 meals, making it easy to find something to be thankful for this year.