Severna Park church brings holiday to homeless

SEVERNA PARK, Md. - Serving a large group for dinner is not just a Thanksgiving thing.

One church in Severna Park has been making a difference, and they did so all week long.

At Our Shepherd Lutheran Church more than 30 people were served dinner on Thanksgiving. They planned to do the same thing Friday and Saturday.  The church is one of 60 churches in Anne Arundel County that provide shelter and comfort to those in need.

"We're blessed, so this is just a way to pass the blessings on to other folks," said Dave Newell with Our Shepherd Lutheran Church.

To make those blessings possible, the church utilizes a network of about 100 volunteers.

"We have volunteers that pick them up in the morning and drive them around. We have people that help with the meals. I try to get the youth involved because they love it," Newell said.

Danielle Tinsley was one of many, thankful for the volunteers and what they work to provide.

"I didn't think I was going to have a Thanksgiving dinner," Tinsley said. "They give you food and a warm place to sleep, and they treat you with respect."

It doesn't stop there. In addition to food and a place to shower, the folks at Our Shepherd Lutheran Church have something else to offer – their parking lot.

"A lot of people live out of their car. We allow them to park here to offer a safe place for them. They can shower here and get food," Newell said.

While the difficulties of being homeless will last through the holidays, those accepting the help from the church find relief.

"You're around people you just met and some you've known for a while. You know, it just seems like a holiday," said church guest William Isenberg.

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