Ascension Catholic Church in Bismarck carried out its mission of feeding hundreds for free this Christmas Eve.

The church fed about 500 people a Christmas meal of turkey, corn and mash potatoes among other food items.

In addition to the free meals, about 600 Christmas toys were also handed out, thanks to community donations.

The church has been giving back to Bismarck for 14 years.

Last year, Ascension had to cancel the holiday meal because of COVID, but this year organizers are happy the event went uninterrupted.

“When we started putting advertisements out and flyers out, people that typically come to this dinner, they called and were so excited and crying, they were happy. It was devastating to a lot of people last year that weren’t able to come because they were totally alone on Christmas,” Parish Business Manager Beth Kathol said.

40 volunteers helped successfully run the free Christmas dinner.