‘That made me feel good’: Bethel Church extends helping hand to less fortunate to build up community

The Bethel Church hosted the Body and Soul event for the less fortunate in Jacksonville (WJXT)

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – The Bethel Church hosted an event Sunday morning to give back to the community.

The Body and Soul event is bigger than just receiving a new shirt or a free haircut. It’s an initiative to serve people without homes and the less fortunate in Jacksonville.

For some, it’s also a second shot at life after hardship.

Carlton Robinson is homeless and is looking to get back on his feet since he moved to the area from Gary, Indiana.

“I just want to get a job,” Robinson said.

Robinson was number 90 in line to get a haircut to improve his appearance so that he can start working again. He said he fell into hard times after moving to Jacksonville and was grateful to come to a place where people were willing to help others who lost their way.

“It made me feel great that somebody out there allowed me to come and help me out and stuff, and they took time out,” Robinson said. “That made me feel good that somebody out there cares.”

Rudolph Mckissick Jr. is the church’s pastor. The event provided people in need with health care, resources for housing and basic necessities to help turn lives around.

“Statistics tell us all of us are one or two paychecks away from being on the street. So, the reality is all of us could be one of them,” McKissick said. “We have a homeless problem in this city. That is really not being addressed as it should. And I think if the church does not step up in our role, we can do what government can’t do.”

Attendees also received facials at the event, something Nicole Hunter called a rejuvenating experience.

“I haven’t had that done in so many years,” Hunter said.

Hunter said she escaped an abusive relationship and became homeless. For her, as well as many others, self-care is essential to building self-esteem.

“The fact that I can come here, and I don’t feel shame at all. I don’t feel judged. It just feels great to be a part of the community,” Hunter said.

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This native of the Big Apple joined the News4Jax team in July 2021.