“Soup Service,” Ensign, Oct. 1994, 70
More than four years ago, our family moved to Naramata, a little village in the Penticton, British Columbia, area. My elderly mother lived with us initially. A devout Anglican, Mother quickly became involved in her church, including volunteering at the local soup kitchen once a week. The kitchen is a local operation run by a consortium of local churches, with each one taking responsibility for a particular day. One day, my mother returned home and reported that the soup kitchen had a particularly difficult time finding help on Fridays.
My wife, Karin, recognized an opportunity when it presented itself. The next week she reported at the soup kitchen with four willing missionaries in tow, and a Friday tradition began. Every Friday for the last four years, Karin and the missionaries have run the Soupteria.
Karin’s Fridays begin early: by 7:30 A.M. she’s chopping and dicing. By the time the missionaries and Sister Val Hansen, another faithful helper, arrive, it’s time to put on a boiler of soup. By eleven o’clock, the soup is hot, the sandwiches are ready, and the workers are ready to greet those milling outside—many of whom have become friends through the years of weekly contact.
An hour later, the kitchen is closed and the group starts the cleanup, leaving the place shipshape for Saturday’s crew. Karin has truly taught me, along with many others, the meaning of service as she unselfishly and willingly devotes her Fridays to serving others.—Mike McCarty, Penticton Ward, Vernon British Columbia Stake