Thomasville ministry hosts Christmas dinner - WALB.com, South Georgia News, Weather, Sports

Thomasville ministry hosts Christmas dinner

THOMASVILLE, GA (WALB) -

You might think the world's fastest delivery man would be exhausted after pulling his annual all-nighter, but ole St. Nick still managed to pay a visit to hundreds of kids in Thomasville Tuesday.

But for Brotherhood of Love Ministry Founder Gary Johnson, getting to this point was not easy.

"The first obstacle was getting over the home invasion where we could have lost our lives, but thank God we didn't. And then we had a hard time coming up with donations for this."

Johnson and his wife Doris were victims in a violent home invasion last month in which burglars stole thousands in cash and jewelry.

"It turned out to be bad, but God turned around and blessed them for something good. And this is what God blessed them with," said Volunteer Obadiah Farley.

But Johnson says for the sake of all those kids, the Christmas Dinner had to go on. "I don't want them to end up dead, or in prison, or in some gang, or on the street corner selling drugs. That's why we try to do whatever we can."

Hundreds of kids were able to take their picture with Santa and were given clothes, toys, and food.

"Some kids can't get gifts, so him giving gifts is what the neighborhood needs. He's bringing a little prosperity back to the neighbor hood and a lot of Christmas Spirit," said Parent Sharol Collins.

Ministry founders say they want their message to spread further than what they are accomplishing today.

"Not only Christmas, but we reach out to the community and help people in need. Especially kids. We are concerned about their education. We talk to them. Minister to them. And going to school and staying in school," said Doris.

Johnson says next year he wants to make his Christmas event even bigger by reaching out to those outside of Thomasville and Thomas County.

Most of the clothes and toys given away at Johnson's event were donated by the Salvation Army and MCLB Albany's Toys For Tots.

Copyright 2012 WALB. All rights reserved.

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