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St. Marks UMC to host “The Family Table” giving the public a free hot meal every Wednesday

Published: Jul. 28, 2021 at 5:53 PM EDT
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OCALA, Fla. (WCJB) - Michael and his wife Jill Beck are co-pastors at St. Marks United Methodist Church in Ocala. The church helps those in need by running multiple food distribution events throughout the week.

As well as housing homeless men dealing with addiction. Helping them recover and find work in the future. Michael himself went to prison and after being released, he found his calling.

“I took a dark turn in my life ended up substance abuse, juvenile incarceration all those things. But then when I had an encounter with Jesus and really had no place else to go. I came back to this church again and they nurtured me in,” said Beck.

Seeing people suffering from addiction and many in need of food. The church decided to start “The Family Table,” which will be a gathering featuring a free hot meal, live music, and story sharing.

“We give away free food that people can actually go home and cook, but we also see a great need for it. So we not only get to bring families together to have family time, but we’ll also be able to bring them together and show them the love of the community,” said Pastor Betti Jefferson-Gadson.

Beck said he hopes the meal can bring everyone together.

“There’s a lot of trauma, there’s a lot of gun violence, the pandemic is an issue we’re constantly dealing with, so we need to create a space of healing and welcome for people and we think that happens around a meal.”

The family table will be starting on August 4 at 6:30 pm and for every Wednesday after.

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