Christmas is a time to care and share in Wiggins

WIGGINS, MS (WLOX) - Several Stone County families have come with their own Christmas tradition.  For the last five years, they've cooked up a holiday feast and shared it with many of their neighbors.

The Caring and Sharing Christmas lunch was once again served inside a building at the Stone County fairgrounds.  Thanks to a variety of donations, the families cooked up a Christmas feast that included ham, turkey, and plenty of desserts.  One of the people who took advantage of the holiday hospitality was Frank Cripps.  "Well first they give out a super meal. And we've enjoyed it over the years. The hospitality is outstanding," he said.

Members of the Caring and Sharing program believe this community service project is the best way to spend Christmas day.  One of the organizers is Jeralda McLendon.  "We have a couple here today that slept in a tent last night. That's not going to happen tonight," said McLendon. "They're going to be in a motel room thanks to us here because we're going to see to it that they do. And that just warms your heart."

The director of this year's lunch isn't sure she'll be in charge next Christmas.  But McLendon is certain somebody will keep this tradition alive.  "It's a job," she laughed.  "I want it to continue each year and I hope it grows each year. But, I don't know if I'll be the one in charge of it anymore, but I hope that somebody will continue it."

James Richardson is just as hopeful.  He enjoyed his chance to get out of the cold and eat a hot holiday meal.  "You can't experience a more heartwarming feeling than this right here in Wiggins," he said.

The Caring and Sharing team began preparing its holiday feast on Monday.  By the time they served the final Christmas plate, they fed or delivered meals to more than 500 people in the Stone County area.

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