Hunger and Poverty

St. James Meals began in the early 2000s when St. James Sunday School teachers wanted to give our children opportunities to help others. The children made sandwiches and packed lunches to be handed out once a month. Two decades later, a brunch on the third Sunday of each month provides a full breakfast, toiletries, necessities, along with a sack lunch.

In 2010, Sandwich Sunday volunteers expanded the reach of our meals ministry by starting a lovingly-prepared dinner that first hosted seven guests. Now, on the first Tuesday of every month, the meal hosts around 150 guests. We are always looking for people who care about serving our underserved neighbors.

10% of every dollar received at St. James goes out to the world to help communities in need. Part of the core mission of the church is preparing meals for the hungry, turning strangers into neighbors, and sharing the joy of Christmas with our fellow Chicagoans. St. James Meals is one of the primary outreach ministries of St. James Cathedral. Grounded in our understanding of our faith and the Gospel we do our best to feed our neighbors twice a month:
  •  First Tuesdays serving from 3:00 p.m. - 6:00 p.m. 
  •  Third Sundays serving from 1:00 p.m. - 2:30 p.m; Volunteers needed from 11:00 a.m. - 3:30 p.m.  
In response to our need, as a community, to engage in social distancing we are currently partnering with The Protein Bar & Kitchen to provide healthy and sustaining meals for those who need them in addition to prepackaged snacks. We also provide amenity bags, including hygiene products and a pair of socks, during every meal. 
After years of serving our meals ministry guests at 10:30 a.m. in the Great Hall, St. James Meals will be moving our meal time to 1:00 p.m. on Sundays. We are happy to be maintaining our highly appreciated brunch menu. This move is exciting as it will eliminate the conflict between attending our primary Sunday worship service and volunteering with our biggest outreach ministry. It will also allow our guests to participate in worship, if they desire. St. James Meals is still running while we are in the midst of this pandemic, and we have a variety of opportunities to serve for all ages! If you are interested in volunteering, reach out to Anna Broadbent

St. James Announces "Meals Among Us" Collaboration & Calls for Volunteers

In October, St. James Cathedral is excited to start a new partnership with Martin Temple AME Zion Church in the Englewood neighborhood on Chicago's South Side. St. James will begin preparing and delivering 100 bagged meals directly to the church on a weekly basis, where they will be distributed to those in their neighborhood who need it most. The demand for food assistance during the pandemic has stretched many outreach services beyond their capacities. This new program will run in addition our St. James Meals Ministry on the plaza, but we are relying on our community to help prepare meals on site. Consider gathering a small group of friends or family from choir, youth group, Sunday School, or the larger congregation when your schedule allows to support your Chicago neighbors. Volunteer times will be Sunday afternoons starting at 12:30 p.m. for an hour or two for a Monday morning delivery. Stay tuned for more details.
If you are interested in learning more about St. James Meals or you would like to participate in the future, please contact Associate for Outreach Ministries, Anna Broadbent.