Empty Bowls is an international project to bring awareness to the fight against hunger, personalized on a community level.
In our community, someone’s bowl is always empty, and this event serves as a reminder that we are all able to help. Visalia Rescue Mission not only wants to fill as many empty bowls as possible, but with the help of a warm meal, a conversation is started that may lead to a full soul.
Guests who attended VRM’s 10th annual Empty Bowls were provided a beautiful, locally hand-crafted bowl that they were able to fill with hot soup, donated by the Vintage Press. The guests were guided to cross the street, where they stood in the same soup line where our most vulnerable community members wait for their dinner each night. Volunteers promptly served each guest their meal and, for a moment, guests were able to experience the warmth of the kitchen and joy of a full bowl.
Each year, guests are able to witness the testimony of a graduate of the Visalia Rescue Mission’s Life Change Academy. This year, Angela Phillips bravely stood and shared her story of how the mission provided her with the tools she needed to find her place in the world. She told how she still notices traits and habits in herself that can lead to relapse, but now that she knows how to identify the familiar feelings, she is able to use her tools to work through them. She gives all thanks to God for mending the relationships with her family and her children. She ended her testimony by stating that not only has the Visalia Rescue Mission changed her life, but it has also changed for every person in her life.
As the evening ended, guests took home their empty bowls. The bowls are placed on their shelves at home as a simple reminder, when they are seen, of all the empty bowls in our community and that everyone is able to help.
The mission of the Visalia Rescue Mission is partnering with Central California to serve the poor and those
in need with the love and power of the gospel of Christ so that they may become God-dependent and contributing members of their community.
There are many ways you may support Visalia Rescue Mission. You may give your time by volunteering with us, donate gently used personal and household items to our thrift stores, donate a vehicle to Mission Motors, give financially, leave a legacy by giving through your will, become a Cheerful Giver through a donor-advised fund, and you may pray for us.
For more information, please contact Betsy at 559-740-4178.