MORE than 150 people from all walks of life gathered yesterday for the annual Our Lady Help of Christians charity lunch.
The lunch has been running for more than 20 years with the aim of bringing together those who feel isolated on Christmas Day.
Father Thomas Brophy said the event addressed the issue of loneliness, which was a problem for many people in Ballarat.
“So many people called me up feeling lonely and asking if they could come to this gathering,” Fr Brophy said.
“Many people have disconnected families and they like the idea of eating with others.
“We need to be giving of ourselves and I’m so happy we had as many people here as we had.”
The annual lunch provided diners with a hot traditional Christmas dinner complete with a roast, baked potatoes, vegetables and gravy, while Christmas carols, decorations and bonbons enhanced the festive spirit.
Redan resident Lyn Janes said she volunteered after her children made alternative plans for Christmas Day lunch.
“Christmas is a time for giving and I prefer to do that than to sit at home,” she said.
Co-organiser Sandra Dillon said almost 170 people attended the lunch at the OLHC Mercy Performing Arts Centre.