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Community event to embrace homeless

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Christmas Eve-Eve Celebration is free

By Amber Coulter

An Elizabethtown resident is drawing on her faith and experience to stage a community event for all area residents, especially those who don’t have a home to go to during Christmas.

Lisa Weaver and her husband began having gatherings with family, friends and music three years ago in their Stephensburg home.

Weaver said the couple wanted to host a similar event when they downsized and moved to Elizabethtown.

“Before I knew it, it started to get bigger,” she said.

Weaver hopes as many as 250 people attend to bring the community together and enrich lives through food, fellowship and music.

“I think it’s a good way to bring the community together and to enrich people’s lives who maybe don’t have a Christmas,” she said.

The free event, called the Christmas Eve-Eve Celebration, takes place from 6 until 9 p.m. Dec. 23 at Pritchard Community Center on Mulberry Street in Elizabethtown.

It is open to the public and includes games for children, dinner and a raffle for prizes.

Entertainment will include local Christian musical acts The Truth Trio and God’s Little Voices.

A major purpose of the event is to reach out to people in the community who are homeless. Warm Blessings soup kitchen on East Dixie Avenue in Elizabethtown will be closed that evening so patrons and volunteers can partake in the dinner and festivities of the Christmas Eve-Eve Celebration.

Some businesses have donated coupons to help the less fortunate get at least a fast food meal on Christmas.

At the time, Weaver and her three children lived in Wisconsin, were homeless and lived in a church shelter for three weeks while she saved money for a new apartment.

Despite working full time for moderate wages, Weaver couldn’t pay rent and had been evicted.

“I guess that’s why I have a heart for these people,” she said.

Weaver said it’s a miracle God pulled her out of homelessness, and she hasn’t been homeless since then. She hopes people who attend the event will leave with renewed hope.

“I hope that they will be enriched in their hope for their faith in life and God, that he loves them,” she said.

Several area churches and businesses have shown support for the event through donations such as food and a Coca-Cola soda fountain.

Weaver thinks local residents, organizations and businesses have supported the effort because they know it might be the only time this holiday season people who are homeless can have a good meal and fellowship.

“It amazes me and it blesses me to see the heart of people is to give this season,” she said.

Weaver can’t guess whether the celebration will become an annual community event.

“Only God knows,” she said.

God will help in the future as he is now if the event is repeated, she said.

Weaver thanks the people and organizations that have helped pull the event together.

“He has provided through the hearts of people in Elizabethtown,” she said.

For more information or to arrange transportation to the event, contact Weaver at 769-5707.

Amber Coulter can be reached at (270) 505-1746 or acoulter@thenewsenterprise.com.