Churches United Helping the Less Fortunate this Christmas Holiday

For some, Christmas is a special time of year, but for others, it's another cold night of looking for a place to stay

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MOORHEAD, Minn. — The holiday season is not always easy for those with no family or without a home.

For some, Christmas is a special time of year, but for others, it’s another cold night of looking for a place to stay.

“A lot of these people are in the same boat that I am and we all try to be friendly to one another to make Christmas good,” said Anna Maria Schulz of Fargo.

Schulz, who is homeless, is 18-years-old and just three days ago, she was given a Christmas miracle.

“I mean, it’s just like a weight off my chest that I’m not on the streets all day,” Schulz said.

She’s been given a place to rest her head at Churches United in Moorhead.

“I think it’s life-saving for them in weather like this to have a safe place to be,” said Pastor Joe Larson of St. Mark’s Lutheran Church.

Dozens of people piled into Churches United to celebrate the holiday.

“We’re doing a service of lessons and carols so we’re going to sing their favorite hymns,” Larson said. “I think for them, that will be a comfort.”

Those staying at Churches United say it’s places like these that give them friends and families to celebrate the holiday with.

Schulz had one simple Christmas wish.

“Have someone to eat dinner with because I thought I was going to go to McDonald’s and have it all by myself,” she said. “But I share Christmas dinner with people that care about me.”

Strangers have become her loved ones.

“That I’ve lost my family. I’ve kind of made my own,” Schulz said.

Others in the metro had a different wish.

“It’s just great to be paying it forward and spreading holiday cheer in these great times that we live in,” said members of the Samsted family.

They stopped by the shelter to donate items people in the community may need but can’t afford.

The Samsteds say donating necessities that are greatly needed by those at the shelter, would brighten up their Christmas.

“We don’t need anything and their in such a big demand for diapers, larger quantities, and why not pay it forward?” they asked.

From meals to services, Churches United has given those in need a chance to celebrate the holiday.

“To know that people care about them and love them and accept them as they are, that really is the message of Christmas,” said Larson.

There has been an influx in the amount of people in need of a place to stay this holiday season.

For the first time, Governor Dayton approved extra shelter at the Moorhead Armory so no one would be left without somewhere to stay.

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