Paz de Cristo April E-News

Paz de Cristo Community Center looking for prepared meals

 A fire started in an area outside the kitchen at the Paz De Cristo Community Center in Mesa early Wednesday morning, March 27th. The fire broke through the duct work to the interior of the kitchen and caused significant damage to the back wall and ceiling area.

The Mesa Fire Department and medical team were assisted by the Tempe Fire Department to get the fire under control in less than 12 minutes. The Mesa Fire Department credited two Paz employees who took swift action to contain the fire until the fire department arrived.

Paz De Cristo provides evening meals and food boxes to the homeless and the working poor in the East Valley. The kitchen is temporarily closed until repairs are completed and the Maricopa health Department has approved the kitchen for re-opening.



Paz will continue to serve meals without utilizing the kitchen due to the generosity of many local area restaurants, organizations and individuals stepping up to provide meals. This includes:

  • Wednesday 3/27               RigaTony’s provided pasta.

  • Thursday 3/28                   Sandwiches and Salads from our pantry & United Food Bank

  • Friday 3/29                         Native New Yorker provided meatless pasta and salad.

  • Saturday 3/30                    Art Klaum and the CIC group from St. Tim’s served sandwiches.

  • Sunday 3/31                       Pizza from Fred Buck & friends and pasta from Oreganos’  

  • Monday 4/1                       Tom’s BBQ  provided their famous pork sandwiches

  • Tuesday 4/2                        Rosita’s Restaurant provided their enchilada casserole

  • Wednesday 4/3                 Central Christian volunteers provided hotdogs, beans & chips

  • Thursday 4/4                     RigaTony’s will be coming back once again

  • Friday 4/5                           Volunteers from the Chandler Mall are serving subs.

  • Saturday 4/6                  Sun Valley Community providing the meal

  • Sunday 4/7 Insight employees providing meal from Toms’ BBQ                                                   


  • Monday 4/8 Rose & Alex providing a meal prepared by EVIT

  • Our facility insurance and our renters insurance have been working together to schedule inspections, clean up and restoration crews. This will be a fairly complex process with several different trades (electrical, mechanical, dry wall, restoration, painting, etc.) needing to be coordinated. Efforts are of course delayed due to the Easter holiday. At this time, we do not have an estimate for when the kitchen area will be back in operation.


We have been blessed with many groups and individuals stepping up to help by providing completely prepared meals. Many have sent donations to help with expenses. We are truly grateful for all our friends and supporters.



Heroes at Paz

  Each morning, Pantry Manager Lidia Beltran opens our gate and checks the property to make sure it is clear and safe. On Wednesday, March 27th,  Lidia arrived and saw everything was normal and went inside to start her day.  A few minutes later Marcial Verdejol, our maintenance man arrived and went to check a swamp cooler he had worked on the previous day.  Marcial spotted the flames coming up from our blankets located at the rear of the kitchen. Lidia quickly called 911, then Marcial and Lidia ran to the kitchen are and contained the fire with a combination of a water hose, fire extinguisher and a few garden tools.  

The parking lot was filled with emergency vehicles within 5 minutes and the fire was completely extinguished within 12 minutes. Forrest Smith, the public information officer for Mesa Fire and Medical commended Marcial and Lidia for their quick action and will be recognizing them at the next Good Samaritan event held at a local Mesa fire station.  

These two employees are responsible for saving our kitchen.  If they had not sprung to action as quick as they did, there’s no telling when we could reopen if we could at all.  Thank you Lidia and Marcial for doing what you did that day on top of what you do each day at Paz.  You are both Heroes to your fellow staff, all our volunteers and to the community.



The Arizona Republic/12 News Season for Sharing
Season for Sharing
We received a $7,500 grant today for our Emergency Food Box Program.
The grant is one more way in which The Arizona Republic, 12 News and partner with readers and viewers to serve the greater good and improve the quality of life in our communities. The 2012-2013 Season for Sharing campaign generated $2.74 million to support local nonprofit agencies that help our local community.  


Paz de Cristo Contacts:
Arlen Westling -
Christine Oliviero -
John Farley  -
Roger Halvorson -
Lydia Beltran


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Paz de Cristo
424 W. Broadway Rd.
Mesa, Arizona 85210

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