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Reflections on St. George’s History

St. George’s Center has been feeding the hungry in Riviera Beach for nigh unto thirty years. It all started with the small St. George’s Episcopal Church.

When the neighborhood around the Church began to change in the 1980’s, the Church took notice of the increasing numbers of individuals who were obviously in great need of basic things like food and shelter. The shelter issue the Church could not fix, but food was another matter.

Meals were offered in the Church Parish Hall and people came.

The members of the St. George’s parish bought, prepared and served the food. More and more people came to be fed. Soon, it became obvious that this small church could not carry this load alone.

The call went out to other Episcopal churches in the northern part of Palm Beach County and a good many responded. Soon, other denominational congregations were joining in as well. A shared ministry was developed and each participating group took their turn in buying, preparing, and serving meals.

The people who came to eat brought their other needs as well: their need for information about aid programs and how to access them; their need for jobs; their need for clothes; their need for health care; and yes, their need for permanent shelter. A volunteer Board of Directors was assembled to plan and oversee the shared work.