Photo by Kira Erickson/Whidbey News Group
                                Coordinator Jean Matheny exchanges soup with Rick Klein, a former longtime volunteer in the Island Church soup kitchen.

Photo by Kira Erickson/Whidbey News Group Coordinator Jean Matheny exchanges soup with Rick Klein, a former longtime volunteer in the Island Church soup kitchen.

Lunches are in the bag

In an effort to continue serving community meals, several soup kitchens have taken to dishing up in the parking lots and offering to-go lunches.

Administrator Susan Walker at St. Hubert’s Catholic Church in Langley said the church’s soup kitchen meal is still served at its regular time, 11:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. on Wednesdays, but has adapted so community members can pull up in their cars, grab individual containers of soup that have already been ladled and leave. Meals are served with bread.

“We were going to close it, but then we thought, why would we do that? People are offering takeout,” Walker said about the weekly meal.

The Island Church of Whidbey, also in Langley, is continuing to serve its twice-weekly Tuesday and Thursday lunches from noon to 1:30 p.m.

Coordinator Jean Matheny said the newly named Back Door Lunch program, which began this past week, allows people to park their cars, grab a meal and leave.

Community members can choose from three different kinds of soup — clam chowder usually being the most popular choice — as well as sandwiches and a variety of home-baked goods. Water bottles are also available.

Although the number of volunteers has greatly decreased for this program, the kitchen of Island Church still bustles with activity as volunteers prepare sandwiches and ladle soup.

“We care a lot about the people that come in and we’re so happy that we can serve our community, and we’re going to be open rain or shine,” Matheny said.

Both meals accept donations, but there is no suggested amount to come and eat. One person even chose to donate a bottle of hand sanitizer.

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