The Enid News and Eagle, Enid, OK

December 3, 2012

Church’s clothing closet, kitchen are open to the poor

By Phyllis Zorn, Staff Writer
Enid News & Eagle

ENID, Okla. — University Place Christian Church is one of the smaller of the five Christian Church congregations in Enid, but it has a huge community outreach.

One such outreach is the Second Mile Clothing Closet, where anyone can pick up an outfit or a pair of shoes at no charge.

Just last week, a whole busload of people came from Kansas for clothing, the largest group to visit the clothing closet Linda Bair, who coordinates its operation, can remember.

“They heard about us and brought them here,” Bair said. “They took 300 items.”

“Since we give clothes away instead of sell them, a lot of people would rather bring theirs to us than a thrift store,” said Jerry Galbreath, formerly the pastor of the church and still a very-involved member of the congregation.

The clothing closet has been part of what the church does for several years.

“We’ve had wealthy people die, and their families have brought in very stylish clothes, sometimes still in the wrappers,” Galbreath said.

A bridal closet rents out wedding gowns for weddings taking place at the church. The rental fee is the cost of dry cleaning before the next time a bride dons the gown.

On Monday nights, the church serves the Mamre Meal. Named after the place where Abraham served a meal to three men who turned out to be angels, the meal is offered to any and all who come.

This week, the meal drew 55 diners for fellowship, fun and food. They played a round of bingo, and winners got to choose from an assortment of Christmas-themed prizes while the kitchen volunteers finished up the meal preparations.

Annie Galbreath, Laurel Arnold and Jackie Egelston oversee most of the meal preparation. On Monday, Paige Pedersen, Ryan Combs, Monty and Valerie Zaloudek helped with preparation, serving and cleaning.

“I come every Monday night,” said Frances Howard, one of the Mamre Meal’s regulars. “I work at ResCare, and I bring my consumer. I bring him here to eat dinner.”