'If it wasn't for them, we would be hungry': Community Thanksgiving brings people together

Friday, November 25, 2022
'Love Thy Neighbor' Thanksgiving held in Elgin
Neighbors in Elgin came together Thursday to break bread on Thanksgiving.

ELGIN, Ill. (WLS) -- Neighbors in Elgin came together Thursday afternoon to break bread on Thanksgiving.

"The food was really good and that the people here are really nice," said Mariah Bell, who came with her family.

Dozens of volunteers, from the cooks to the servers, worked to create a memorable holiday for the "Love Thy Neighbor" community Thanksgiving held at First United Methodist Church.

Perla Sanchez helped organize the the dinner.

"I was so afraid that not everything was going to fit on the plate," she said.

The Thanksgiving celebration was not just for the homeless. It was for everyone who wanted to share a meal with their neighbor.

"I get really emotional because I just really love people. I just think we all need this," Sanchez said.

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Some volunteers stayed up for hours in anticipation.

"I couldn't fall asleep last night and I tried everything in the book. And now that I am down here, I feel relief. I see the excitement in the building," said volunteer Frank Scheid.

Karla Diaz is inspired to volunteer next year after watching her mom in action.

"She likes helping out and she has a good heart," Diaz said.

For Sanchez, giving people the opportunity to serve and to be served is what motivates her.

"Faith has really shown me this is where I need to be and God has been putting me in the right places," Sanchez said.

Each dinner guest left with a thank you card, thanking them for celebrating Thanksgiving with their neighbors.

"I am very thankful for the community dinner. If it wasn't for them, we would be hungry," said dinner guest Dakota Rutherford said.