DALLAS (CBSDFW.COM) - Some love him, others hate him, Glenn Beck is a lightning rod for controversy when it comes to politics. But this weekend he is hosting a “Restoring Love” event at Cowboys stadium in Arlington. And thousands answered the call from all over America.
The three day event kicked off Thursday morning, with some 30,000 people enrolling for book signings and lectures. It is the third year Beck has created a “restoring” event.
Dave Osborne was at the first two, including last year’s in Israel. “I don’t view it as political at all,” he said. Instead, he sees it as an opportunity. “To do our part to give back to the community. That’s what this whole event is about is.”
Three generations of Penny Reed’s family see it as an opportunity for healing. “Glenn Beck, is for us, everybody gets to see where we were missing, what was happening,” she told CBS 11 News.
Reed’s granddaughter Rosie Griffith offered, “No matter what side of the spectrum you’re on I think you can benefit from this and be together and have something positive.”
The events also provides an opportunity of a different kind, for commercial vendors, and also for those lobbying for conservative causes.
“We try to effect public policy with Biblical values,” said Ann Hettinger or Concerned Women of America/Concerned Women of Texas. “People are hungry for someone to organize them so they can make an effective impact on the culture.”
But Beck’s group argues that “Restoring Peace” is also an opportunity for service. On Friday, attendees are expected to perform service projects across North Texas.
For Operation Blessing International, a new food pantry getting off the ground in Grand Prairie, 200 volunteers will help sort mass quantities of food into family-size packets.
“We’ll be sorting beans and putting them into Ziploc bags so it’ll be enough to feed a family instead of enough to feed an army,” said Jody Gettys. “We don’t have big staffs to be able to support the things we do, we really count on the help of volunteers and the work they’ll be doing is probably going to be worth thousands of dollars here at the warehouse.”