Feeding the Poor – 140 years ago

Old folk in snow

Charity and food hand-outs. How far have things changed since 1878?

This piece was in The Quiver magazine in 1879.

Free Breakfast Mission

For about four years this admirable philanthropic agency has been in operation, and with excellent practical effect among the outcasts of the city of Glasgow. Every Sunday morning more than 2,000 men and women emerge from the squalor and wretchedness of their surroundings to partake of the breakfast which Christian charity provides for them, with a view to the ultimate rescue and reclamation of some, and to the casting of Gospel light and kindly influence over all.

At noon a hungry army of 1,300 children are similarly provided with a dinner, that efforts may be made from that vantage ground to introduce the motley waifs to Him who said “Suffer the little children to come unto me.” During the past year nearly 1,000 of these orphans and neglected ones have been either sent to “homes,” or “training ships,” or to remunerative work, or have had acceptable medical treatment. For the 400 girls who apply for the “merciful morsels,” industrial, educational, and religious classes are conducted.

Special temperance organisations in connection with the same great movement have resulted in the reclamation of many drunkards, and this portion of the work seems to be unusually successful. In several other directions this noble mission is vigorously pursuing its great design, and it may well urge its claims on the philanthropic for sympathy and aid. Its conductors remind us that winter is again at hand, and that the outlook in commercial and industrial directions is of the gloomiest. In pointing their appeal they wisely quote from the Highest Authority, “When thou makest a feast, call the poor, the maimed, the lame, the blind, and thou shalt be blessed, for they cannot recompense thee, for thou shalt be recompensed at the resurrection of the just.” It needs but to add that the central pivot of the mission is the Evangelical Hall, James Morrison Street, Glasgow.

The Quiver, 1879

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