Thursday's dinner was a steaming hot bowl of soup for residents all across Middletown — spicy ones, vegetarian ones, Mexican and Jamaican inspired bowls, some with beans, others with squash, chicken and beef.
The St. Vincent De Paul Amazing Grace food pantry Amazing Challenge kicked off this week as volunteers ladled out 40 gallons of soups donated from local restaurants — earning an astounding $11,000 in just two hours at Middletown's St. Francis of Assisi Church.
Event coordinator Rochelle Hughes was overwhelmed at the response. "We are very very grateful to this generous community and all the businesses that donated food/bread/desserts and CT Rental Center for the soup kettles, Sternos and ladles to hold all the delicious soup!"
The event grows every year, Hughes says.
"We were blessed with a lot of help from the Dragons in Action club at Middletown High School and their advisor Jackie Carraway from Middletown's Youth Services Bureau."
The meal marks the kickoff for Amazing Grace's effort to raise funds to meet the City of Middletown's Challenge Grant of $22,500, which will enable the food pantry to continue to serve close to 1,000 families every month.
Hughes says the food pantry has served an unprecedented 1,000 families six out of the nine months of this year.
Those who were unable to attend can send a check to: Amazing Grace at St. Vincent de Paul Middletown, 617 Main Street, Middletown, CT 06457.