Free Lenten lunches offer fellowship for the faithful

Feb. 25—Christians gathered Friday to share a free Lenten lunch at Cross Roads Community Presbyterian Church in Leechburg and Vandergrift Presbyterian Church in Vandergrift.

The meals were sponsored by the churches' respective ministerial programs. "We served more than 30 at the luncheon. Everyone seemed to enjoy it," volunteer Gwenn Rybicki of Leechburg said. The menu in Vandergrift included broccoli cheese soup and sausage gumbo, cheese spread sandwiches and ham barbecue sandwiches and desserts.

At Cross Roads, the lineup included tuna and cheese sandwiches, as well as egg croissants, accompanied by chips and desserts. The church welcomed about 30 diners. "I just made a new friend here. They invited me to sit and eat with them," said newcomer Violet Phillips of Allegheny Township. In Vandergrift, five volunteers baked five different cakes for dessert, and about 15 volunteers prepped and cooked to provide the meal. "I just think it's great to serve your community while serving God," Rybicki said. The lunches are offered Fridays during Lent at both churches, with Cross Roads' starting at 11:45 a.m. and Vandergrift Presbyterian's beginning at noon.

Joyce Hanz is a Tribune-Review staff writer. You can contact Joyce by email at or via Twitter .