Storm-battered? Toms River church opens hospitality center

If you’re stranded in the rain, snow and winds – or the power drops out at your house – or you just don’t want to be by yourself when the weather’s raging – you’ve got a landing spot in the center of Toms River.

First Assembly of God Church on Bay Avenue in Toms River. (Vin Ebenau, Townsquare Media)
First Assembly of God Church on Bay Avenue in Toms River. (Vin Ebenau, Townsquare Media)

First Assembly Church of God, 800 Bay Avenue, opens its ongoing Hospitality Center at about 12:00 noon, and Pastor Paul plans to keep it open until the weather has calmed.

He’s being ably assisted by Paul Hulse, of the Ocean and Atlantic County nonprofit Haven/Beat The Street advocacy group.

“It’s exciting for us,” Hulse said. “Not that the weather is exciting, but the church is welcoming anyone needing help, and we’re glad to be part of that with them.”

They plan to supply hot meals, refreshments, even Netflix – and they’ve got a backup generator to carry on if the electricity fails.

As outlined earlier this winter in the Townsquare Tableau at the base of this article, Pastor Paul has operated the center several days each month. Hulse estimates that eight visitors show up on any given day. They’re prepared for more today.

“We can hold up to about 14 people in total,” he said. “Fourteen is our goal.”

If you can’t reach the church but you have needs, Hulse offers his cell number, so that he can direct you to a spot near you: 386-315-0168.

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