MOA recently hosted its annual Feeding of the Homeless at the St. Mary's Interfaith Dining Hall here in Stockton, CA with great success.
A total of 435 less fortunate people were served at this year's event. They enjoyed a Filipino lunch consisting of lechon, pancit, and lumpia which was supplied by MOA. Rice, green salad, and pastries were supplied by the facility.
We had a great turn out of volunteers this year. It was great to see familiar and new faces come out to help. I personally want to give a special mention to a birthday girl who chose to celebrate her birthday in the most selfless way, Marie Foronda. She volunteered her husband, Jimmy and kids, Jillian and Adam to help us out. Chicken shredding and lumpia frying were taken on by the family.
With over 3 deep trays full of chicken that needed to be shredded for the pancit, we needed an army of men to do the job. If an army full of men is what we needed, it's what we got! A brother tag team of John and Jestin Foronda along with their cousin from Oxnard, CA, Dan Foronda got the job done. Then of course it was time to cook the pancit in what is perhaps the biggest pot I've ever seen in my life. My mother, Grace Panalsigui-Lu took command of it along with her son and son-in-law, Michael Lu and Bryan Revives, who took charge of stirring their paddles to make a flavorful pancit dish. Another first time volunteer with MOA was an old friend of mine, Joey Brotarlo, who helped the mother-sons team with their pancit dish.
The thousand lumpia pieces were fried to golden brown perfection by none other than Vince Esber. I couldn't help but remember our recently deceased Ike Timbreza. It was the first year he wasn't there to help with the Lumpia. That was his station. He is truly missed.
The sandwich station was taken over by our sandwich veteran, Kate Foronda along with her cousins, Danica and Jillian. They made PB&J sandwiches with passion.
The Ballucanag family also joined us with enthusiasm as they served the under privileged. We can't forget the Pangaliman family of Tracy who enthusiastically helped with wherever station needed their assistance. Of course, the lechons were picked up by none other than Brian Pangaliman and cut to pieces, ready to be served. Our dear President used knife skills to aid in this.
It's always so fulfilling to do this. Volunteering here, even if it is once a year, is a great reminder to always be thankful for our blessings.
Until next year, again. On behalf of my family, I want to wish all of you a blessed Christmas and a prosperous New Year!