While government officials continue to squabble about how to help those who are out of work due to the coronavirus pandemic, private charities have been busy handing out food to the hungry.
In Los Angeles, the Christian nonprofit Los Angeles Dream Center is providing 11,000 meals per day with over 300,000 distributed thus far, thanks to the help of partners like Kanye West and Chick-fil-A, Fox News reported.
Dream Center co-founder Matthew Barnett called the effort a “miracle of biblical proportions.” He also credited support from West, whose recent conversion to born-again Christianity has been as profound as it is public, for the ability to now deliver meals to shut-in seniors.
“We will change the world,” West tweeted months before his gospel album “Jesus Is King” dropped in October. “God is on my side. I am a Christian. I am a tax payer. I am myself. God is with us.”
We will change the world. God is on my side. I am a Christian. I am a tax payer. I am myself. God is with us.
— ye (@kanyewest) January 1, 2019
Though raised in a Christian household, West rejected his religious upbringing, according to Beliefnet. However, he experienced a newfound faith and began holding what he called Sunday Service in December 2018. He declared himself a born-again Christian in 2019, according to The Christian Post.
Perhaps fittingly, the “Jesus Is King” album included “Closed on Sunday,” which used Chick-fil-A’s policy of remaining closed on the sabbath as an allusion to West’s own newfound appreciation for honoring the day.
The restaurant chain has been providing sandwiches every day for Dream Center clients as well.
“Every morning I wake up and stand in the parking lot with our dedicated staff, I am blown away that day after day, week after week, there is enough food to provide to folks that need it,” Barnett marveled in his statement to Fox News.
The Dream Center swooped in immediately after Los Angeles Unified School District, America’s second-largest school district, closed on March 13 and has been giving out food and other necessities every day since.
According to the school district’s website, about 84 percent of its students qualified for free or reduced meals, making this act of charity especially vital to the struggling community.
At the heart of what Dream Center and its partners are doing is the spirit of Christian charity. The Dream Center has its own Angelus Temple, which its website identifies as a “Pentecostal Megachurch of the International Church of the Foursquare Gospel,” as sort of a spiritual engine that drives the charitable efforts.
The organization shared photos of the L.A. Dream Center with the caption: “We are so grateful we are able to support you by providing meals, but there is nothing more powerful than prayer.”
“Thank you for opening up to us about some of the challenges you are facing. God loves you and we can put our faith in him. We are here for you, and we love you!”
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We are so grateful we are able to support you by providing meals, but there is nothing more powerful than prayer. Thank you for opening up to us about some of the challenges you are facing. God loves you and we can put our faith in him. We are here for you, and we love you!
West and Chick-fil-A are also unapologetically Christian, even in the face of backlash for doing so. It is a testament to a deep and abiding love for Christ when a celebrity or even a fast-food chain would risk so much monetary success to remain outspoken for the faith.
It has turned out well for both, thanks to the hunger of the American public still for the message of Christ, now more than ever.
While it isn’t only Christians who are helping out during the COVID-19 pandemic, it certainly appears that many of those willing to get their hands dirty are driven by the love of Jesus.
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