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PITTSBURGH (KDKA) — For more than 65 years, the Light Of Life Rescue Mission on the North Side has been helping those in need, often with a meal or a place to stay.

But Friday, it was about more than a meal.

There was something special in the air.

“What we try to do every single day is embody who Jesus is and show that to the people who come through our doors with love and kindness and dignity and respect and meeting people where they are. So days like this where, we’re specifically remembering the reason for Christmas, is really meaningful for us,” Light Of Life spokesperson Kate Wadsworth said.

At the shelter’s annual Christmas banquet, there was a huge tent filled with coats, hats, gloves and boots.

People were able to pick what they needed, in order to stay warm during the winter.

(Photo Credit: KDKA)

The shelter also made Christmas dinner for hundreds of people at their facility on the North Side and delivered thousands more meals to people in 14 high-rise buildings across the city.

Kevin Pitts is one of the cooks who helped make the meals.

He used to come to the mission, but when they found out he went to culinary school, they gave him a job, and he couldn’t be happier.

“Helping out and serving the community, serving other people, does me a great deal inside toward my spirit,” Pitts said.

“Holidays really invoke the sense of family and there’s some people who just don’t have family or are estranged from their family because of the choices that they’ve made. Maybe they’re homeless. Maybe they’re addicted. But they don’t have a place to go. So to be able to provide that place for people especially if they’re feeling lonely or forgotten on the holiday season, it means everything to us to be able to have our doors open to do that,” Wadsworth said.

The Light Of Life Rescue Mission is open 24 hours a day, 365 days a year, and no one is denied services.