Volunteers feed the homeless, Lancia, the sick, and the disabled at Myongdong Restaurant. The number of people who come to eat can be up to 800 per day.
The Catholic Church’s Commission for Social Services for the Poor in the Seoul Archdiocese feeds 800 homeless, elderly, sick, and disabled people at Myongdong Restaurant in Seoul, South Korea.
The food delivery activity is carried out twice a day at 9 AM–1 PM and 1–5 PM.
Father Mikael Mintu, the head of Divine Word Missionaries' JPIC in Korea and one of the volunteers who helped with this humanitarian project, said that the volunteers always pray together before starting new projects.
He also said there was a briefing on what to do and eat for the day and setting up the venue.
The committee asked the volunteers to join for a 30-minute spiritual lecture after the food tend ready. Volunteers and people helped by the humanitarian mission share their stories.
The distribution of food always ends with a prayer, Father Mintu said. The priest said this is a sign of the Seoul Diocese's deep concern for the poor.
He stressed that the feeding mission is to address the physical needs of poor, hungry people due to a lack of food to keep their tummies full and their existence remembered.
Father Mintu also said that, morally, making food for the poor is a way to show compassion.
“What they require is a compassionate attitude and sympathy for the reality of life for the least fortunate in society, in the hope that this may inspire a new spirit of life," said Father Mintu.
Father Mintu says that the activities that have been going on for a long time have not only saved many people from hunger, but they have also made many people aware that these activities can only be done with the help of many people: donors, facilities, infrastructure, and volunteers.
According to Father Mintu, this is a way for the Diocese of Seoul and its volunteers to demonstrate Jesus' option for the poor.
By participating in this type of activity, the priest hopes to explain in concrete terms what it means to follow Jesus' example of standing by the poor.
Volunteers don't have much money, but they have the desire, time, and energy to help the diocese's goal of helping the poor and hurting, said Father Mintu.
This mission to save the lives of others has made those who come to 'enjoy' food and drinks feel satisfied.
Father Mintu said that guests always express their gratitude for the food and service.
He acknowledges that supporting the needy is "very noble but quite difficult."
According to Father Mintu, the challenge is that those hungry individuals, always in the neighborhood, will locate their food.
He acknowledges that eradicating poverty will require the cooperation of numerous parties.
With the help of concrete words and actions, the priest hopes that all believers will show that they are like Jesus.
Some have money, he continues, but lack the time necessary to serve. Some people have time but not enough energy. Specific individuals possess authority but lack the willingness to exercise it.
"We don't have any money, but we still have enough time and energy," he added.
“That's what I have, and that's what I shared at Myongdong Restaurant,” he concluded.
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