When Carol and Willie Fowler's daughter's wedding was called off just 40 days before it was scheduled to take place, the Atlanta couple decided to turn her already-paid-for reception into a fancy feast for Atlanta's homeless.
"It was my husband's idea," Carol told WBUR.
"We prayed about it. And when he woke up the next morning, he said, 'We're going to call Hosea Feed the Hungry and ask if we can donate it to the needy.'"
The Fowlers teamed up with local charity Hosea Feed the Hungry to host the first annual Fowler Family Celebration of Love, where they served a four-course meal to 200 of the city's poorest, many of them children.
"We're very pleased that she’s handling it so well," Carol told Here & Now about her daughter, Tamara.
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Tamara joined them at the feast once intended to be her wedding reception.
"She was also very delighted to see and know that others had an opportunity to enjoy something, rather than just allow it to go to waste," she added.
Carol hopes other families dealing with event cancellations will follow their example:
"Events are canceled, and sometimes for unknown reasons. Do no allow that opportunity to go to waste. Call up your favourite charity. Give them an opportunity to use that for people that will not have an opportunity, perhaps in life."
The Fowlers plan to host a similar event, paid for by sponsors, next year.
"We would love it to happen, and we will start working on it immediately. What we would like to do is look for sponsors to have a larger gathering," Carol told Here & Now.