Volunteers serve hundreds at Bradenton's Our Daily Bread

BRADENTON — The Jewish congregation of Ner Tamid were dishing “merry Christmas” greetings and heaping trays of turkey dinners in equal measure at the Our Daily Bread soup kitchen.

Hundreds of down-on-their-luck men and women, and a few children, too, filed through the food line Sunday in what kitchen manager Penny Goethe called a “ballet” of cooking and serving.

Fifty turkeys, four cases of green beans, 150 pounds of potatoes, 100 pounds of sweet potatoes, dozens of pies, and more went into making possible the mitzvah — a good deed — by 10 volunteers from Ner Tamid.

“This is a labor of love, unfortunately,” said Elaine Mittler, Ner Tamid board chair.

Her daughter, Rhonda Mittler, stood in front of the serving line and handed each diner their tray of food and greeted them with a cheery merry Christmas.

“It’s a nice way to give everyone time to be with their families,” Rhonda Mittler said, referring to Our Daily Bread’s Christian volunteers.

“What would we be doing? Going out for Chinese food and watching a movie,” she said. “Besides, it makes you feel good.”

For more, see Monday's Bradenton Herald.