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Soup kitchens in Xi’an parishes get public tick

XI’AN (SE): “They have brought warmth to the homeless,” the Chinese Business View headlined an article on the Soup Kitchen of Charity and the Soup Kitchen of Mercy of the Yellow River, in Sha’anxi, which are run by volunteers from the parishes of Nantang and Tianxing in the diocese of Xi’an.

The Chinese Business Review, which is published in Sha’anxi, has a daily circulation of around 500,000 copies and claims 17 million visitors on its Internet edition.

Fides reported that the article on the soup kitchens showed great appreciation for the two initiatives.

The Soup Kitchen of Charity was set up three years ago and offers lunch every Sunday to the homeless, as well as migrant workers and farmers. The parishioners explained to the Chinese Business Review, “We are open to all those in need, because we are followers of the merciful Jesus.”

In order to improve their service, last summer they repaired and renovated the kitchen in the parish to offer a cozy and well equipped place for people to come, as well as installing a shower near the church compound.

After Sunday Mass the volunteers open the kitchens for business. Periodically, doctors go to the homes of people in need and offer their services free of charge.

At Christmas, in both winter and in summer, the same volunteers who run the soup kitchens distribute clothes, as well as hot and cool drinks, both at the kitchen and in various public places around the area.

Although the statistics are not complete, in 2015 approximately 5,000 people took advantage of the Soup Kitchen of Charity, which is financed by the parish itself at a cost of about 12,000 yuan ($15,000).

The Soup Kitchen of Mercy of the Yellow River has been active for 10 years and every Monday, Wednesday and Friday offers dinner to the homeless and the needy.

In both places, food quality is kept under strict medical control, but importantly, apart from food, Christian love is dispensed to the abandoned and marginalised people.


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