Mission: Thanksgiving

Monetary Donations
Frozen Meat (Deer or Cow)
Non-perishable Food
New Socks and Underwear
Sleeping Bags
Bottled Water & Soft Drinks
Travel Size Personal Hygiene Items

In addition to the schedule below, donations can be dropped off at any time at Love & Care Ministries offices:
Love and Care Ministries (325) 670-0246
233 Fannin Street
Abilene, Texas 79603

FRIDAY, Nov. 18
7 a.m.-7 p.m.
Arrow Ford
4001 South First Street
More Information: Contact Mark Hewitt, executive director of Love & Care Ministries, 325-670-0246
When: 7 a.m.-7 p.m. Friday, Nov. 18
Where: Love & Care Ministries Merkel facility, 906 N. Third St., Merkel 
When: 7 a.m.-7 p.m. Friday, Nov. 18
Where: Love & Care Ministries, 605 S. First St., Clyde
When: 7 a.m.-7 p.m. Friday, Nov. 18
Where: Corner of Commercial Avenue and 23rd Street

By Loretta Fulton

A sure sign that the holidays are coming is the annual Mission: Thanksgiving event sponsored by Love & Care Ministries.

The original version, held on the parking lot of Arrow Ford the Friday before Thanksgiving, is in its 24th year. The Merkel event is in its 10th year and the one in Clyde is in its seventh year. Love & Care Ministries opened a new site in Anson this year, and a Mission: Thanksgiving will be held on the corner of Commercial Avenue and 23rd Street to benefit that facility. All the events will be held 7 a.m.-7 p.m. Friday, Nov. 18.

Opening new locations proves how much Love & Care Ministries is needed. The ministry has been the one-stop place for the homeless and needy in Abilene since it opened. In response to the need in surrounding communities, founder Mark Hewitt has been behind expansion to Merkel, Clyde, and Anson. As always, the need is great, Hewitt said.

“This year is very important in our donations,” he said, “because times are getting harder for those in need.” 

Everyone is invited to donate clothing, food, bottled water, blankets, sleeping bags, and other items, as well as cash at any of the locations. Large Penske and U-Haul trucks are used now for the collections in Abilene, instead of semi-trailers. Last year, an equivalent of 11 trailer loads of donated items and more than $200,000 in cash were collected through the Mission: Thanksgiving drive. Hewitt is hopeful that that giving trend continues.

“Our biggest need is canned food and frozen meat,” he said. “But if someone were to give a cash donation, we’re able to buy those items in a bigger way.” 

Cash donations are always needed. Anyone who donates $500 or more will be added to the Wall of Love display. But, Hewitt said, cash donations of any size are appreciated and will be put to good use. Just as in the past, Hewitt is expecting a big turnout for this year’s Mission: Thanksgiving. 

“The community has always been gracious in coming out and helping us meet the needs,” Hewitt said. “Mainly, God knows our need and He knows it is great!

Loretta Fulton is editor of Spirit of Abilene

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