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Thousands with Full Stomachs and Hearts on Christmas Day in Scranton

SCRANTON, Pa. — For the 26th year, a businessman in Scranton hosted a Christmas Dinner for anyone who needed one, or just did not want to be alone for the...

SCRANTON, Pa. -- For the 26th year, a businessman in Scranton hosted a Christmas Dinner for anyone who needed one, or just did not want to be alone for the holiday.

The dinner was held at St. Patrick's Church on Jackson Street in Scranton, and it truly is a full experience. There was live music, Christmas decorations covering every inch of the room, and old friends and family seeing each other for the first time since last year.

"I can be anywhere in the world I want to be, this is the only place I want to be. For 26 years of doing this, this is not only my Christmas. This is my extended family," said Bob Bolus.

The annual Bob Bolus Sr. Christmas Dinner feeds more than 3,000 people who have nowhere else to go on Christmas Day. Volunteers also packed hundreds of to-go meals for those who could not make it to the church.

"This is my third time coming, I don't have to cook, I don't have to clean up," said Barbara Matthews of Scranton. "I have no family local. I have only a son far away who can't come. I love the people that I'm with. They're wonderful in this neighborhood. What they do for the elderly is just great."

"It's a wonderful thing for the people. Honestly, he makes deliveries to seniors who can't make it. It's just a good thing," said James Long, Scranton.

Mariah Tavila, 7,  was not home playing with her toys this Christmas. She was in charge of desserts.

"Since it's Christmas, I wanted to help," she said.

Mariah is just one of the hundreds of volunteers who show up every year not only to serve the dinner but to keep people company.

"I don't like seeing somebody have Christmas by themselves. That bothers me," said volunteer Marion Beddoe-Iobst, Scranton.

Every year, Bolus tries to get the word out about his dinner, it is no questions asked. His one rule is: do not eat Christmas dinner alone.

"Please come here. You're going to find out this is the best place in the world to be today," he said. "I want them to know who we are in Scranton, Pennsylvania, that to me, this is still home with values and principals. The moral values we have here, to take care of our people."