CHICAGO (WLS) -- On a typical Christmas, St. Sabina Church in Auburn Gresham would welcome buses of homeless Chicagoans for a hot meal and presents. This year, because of the pandemic, they've had to make some adjustments.
"We've still got to serve. We still got to feed people. We still have to care about people despite COVID," said Father Michael Pfleger.
About 60 volunteers spent their Christmas morning at the church to help feed nearly 1,000 people this holiday.
"They wanted to make this a priority," Pfleger said. "This is what Christmas is about."
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The church has collected toys and purchased full Christmas dinners from six local Black caterers. Volunteers packed them at the church to then be delivered to 13 different homeless shelters.
"If we make good food, why can't everyone have it?" said Nicole Jordan-Reed of Nicole Jordan Catering.
Based on the South Side, Nicole Jordan Catering brought 200 meals.
"It's a great opportunity," Jordan-Reed said. "There are a lot of great caterers in the city here. A lot of great African American caterers."
The dozens of volunteers felt a sense of duty to serve their community during this trying time.
"Last year about this time, I had COVID," said volunteer Katrice Kendall. "And once again, I made it through. It's time to make sure that other people make it through. You've got to give a person some hope."
Father Pfleger said it's not so much about what we get on Christmas, but what we give.
"So many people are hurting, and so many people are hungry, so many people are in shelters," he said. "And there's so many people who are depressed and feel abandoned and forgotten and alone. And we've got to let them know that somebody sees them and that we care about them."
St. Sabina volunteers deliver meals, gifts to thousands of Chicago's homeless on Christmas