Hayti group gives Christmas spirit to community

HAYTI, MO (KFVS) - In a season of hanging ornaments, playing Christmas carols, and giving presents, a group in Hayti wants to give back.

"Really good to see all the families, the excitement," said Agape Worship Center Pastor James McCulloch.

"My favorite part about it is seeing the people's faces light up," said Scott Foster.

While Christmastime can be fun, people like Foster know it can also be a lot of pressure.

"It's a stressful time, I've been in those places looking at your kids wondering what am I going to do, looking at the bill making a decision, do I get gifts for my kids, do I pay my light bill," said Foster.

"It's hard to get in the Christmas spirit when you're afraid you know the job's not going to come, or things aren't going to work out, its hard to go out and buy Christmas and put up the tree and be excited like you should be when all that's going on," said Christina Williams.

Williams said it's called Peace of Christmas week. It's five nights of games and toys, haircuts and coats. Each night has a different activity to east the load, while sharing memories.

"We're hoping this week has given everybody time to spend with their family, and to get into the spirit of things, and also to take a little worry off them," said Williams.

On Monday night the group gave away more than 200 boxes of food and groceries.

"It's very, very touching, I can't say in words what it does to me to see people just coming in and needing, and being able to meet that need," said McCulloch.

McCulloch said the Agape Worship Center opened the Impact Center for events just like this, so they can welcome to whole community, and not just church goers.

"We didn't want to make it a church thing, we want to make it a people thing," said McCulloch.

"They can come in and they don't have to explain themselves, they don't have to show us a pay stub, they don't have to explain why they need it, or who they need it for, it's just there," said Williams.

"I'm a firm believer in being a giver," said McCulloch.

The group said they will continue to hold events at the Impact Center throughout next year such as dance classes, Spanish lessons, and youth nights.

You can contact the center at (573) 359-2695 for more details.

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