Gift Guides, Events and Holiday Cheer

Thousands of Meals Prepared for LA Mission Christmas Celebration

Volunteers also wrapped and distributed toys to children at the Skid Row holiday celebration.

By Antonio Castelan and Jonathan Lloyd
|  Thursday, Nov 21, 2013  |  Updated 12:05 PM PDT
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Dracy Williams and her family waited in the rain since 4 a.m. on Christmas Eve, determined to secure a spot at the annual Los Angeles Mission Christmas Celebration on Skid Row. About 4,000 meals made with 2,000 pounds of chicken and 600 pounds of green beans and carrots were served during the annual holiday tradition. Antonio Castelan reports from Downtown LA for the NBC4 News at 5 p.m. on Dec. 24, 2012.

Antonio Castelan

Dracy Williams and her family waited in the rain since 4 a.m. on Christmas Eve, determined to secure a spot at the annual Los Angeles Mission Christmas Celebration on Skid Row. About 4,000 meals made with 2,000 pounds of chicken and 600 pounds of green beans and carrots were served during the annual holiday tradition. Antonio Castelan reports from Downtown LA for the NBC4 News at 5 p.m. on Dec. 24, 2012.

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LA Mission Christmas Celebration

NBC4's Antonio Castelan reports as the Los Angeles Mission prepares for Christmas day. This clip is from "Today in LA" on December 24, 2012.
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Hundreds of needy families were treated to a warm meal on a dreary Christmas Eve as part of the Los Angeles Mission Christmas Celebration on Skid Row.

"It feels blessed. It feels good," said Dracy Williams, recipient. "We out here in the rain and we just blessed, me and my family."

Williams and her family waited in the rain since 4 a.m. Monday, determined to secure a spot at the feast.

Donate, Volunteer: Los Angeles Mission

Dinner preparations began at about 4:30 a.m. About 4,000 meals made with 2,000 pounds of chicken and 600 pounds of green beans and carrots were served, beginning at 11 a.m., by hundreds of volunteers during the annual holiday tradition.

Volunteers also wrapped and distributed toys to children at the Mission.

"It's a chance to get together with other people in the neighborhood," said Herb Smith, of the LA Mission. "It's a sense of hope. It lets them know that people care."

Actress Melissa Gilbert, best known for her role as Laura Ingalls Wilder on the NBC series Little House on the Prairie, volunteered as well.

"People are just in so much pain. We’ve got whole families out here, with children. And that, that’s wrong," Gilbert told NBC4. "So if there’s something I can do to let them know someone really cares, I’ll do it."

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