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Senatobia, MS 38668
Location 551 N Robinson ST
Senatobia, MS 38668-2118
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Monday       8:30 a.m. - 4:30 p.m.
Tuesday      8:30 a.m. - 4:30 p.m.
Wednesday 8:30 a.m. - 4:30 p.m.
Thursday     8:30 a.m. - 4:30 p.m.
Friday          CLOSED

Come To The Table at Tunica UMC

August 24 2023

“Come to the table. There is no one unwelcome here.”
This was the motto for Tunica United Methodist Church’s first “Come to the Table” event, which provided free meals for the Tunica community on August 20. Our church is a part of the United Methodist Church, and, as such, we practice an open communion; we believe everyone is welcome at the Lord’s table, and that was our thought process in creating this new event. Our goal was to have everyone come to the table, knowing they were welcome here.
When a Church makes the decision to take on a new ministry, there are so many “what ifs.”  What if we don’t have enough volunteers?  What if we run out of food? What if no one shows up to eat?  On August 20th, God answered all of those questions for us at Tunica United Methodist Church.  Our church members showed up.  They showed up with tents and tables and chairs and coolers.  They showed up with a grill and food and even smiles in the 100 degree heat.   And the community showed up (99 people to be exact) to our first ever Come to the Table, a new ministry at TUMC where we the Church cook a meal and offer it with a side of fellowship to nearby community members in downtown Tunica, Mississippi.  
We had a full house of volunteers for the event, including our church’s oldest member, Mr. Jimmy Boyd. Our pastor, Brother Keith, put this volunteer opportunity in front of us, saying we needed a few people for setup, a few people to serve, and a few people to clean up. We had over 35 adults show up to serve, and 15 children who were so eager to help out that they were arguing over who would hand out water bottles. Everyone was so excited and worked so well together, and it was a great experience to be a part of it all.
As often is, those coming to bring blessings to others were the ones blessed the most.  Grateful smiles on the faces of those who received their meal of BBQ pork, baked beans, slaw and dessert were a blessing to all present.  Equally heartwarming was the large group of TUMC children and youth who showed up on a Sunday afternoon to brave the heat and learn what it means to serve others.  They eagerly handed out bottled water, packaged up meals, handed out desserts… and maybe enjoyed the nearby playground a little bit too.
As a church, it is important to us to get out into our community, to go where we saw a need, and to be the hands and feet of Christ. Sure, we could have donated money or continued our work at the food pantry—which are also valuable ways to help—but we wanted to directly serve the community we all belong to.
Following the success of the first event, Tunica United Methodist Church plans to make “Come to the Table” a monthly event, with the hope and prayer being that each event gets bigger and bigger and more people from our community will be served.
Lindsay Jones
Casey Townsend