A WEEKLY Warrnambool tradition of a hot lunch and a warm chat has been shut down due to COVID-19.
Uniting Church Reverend Geoff Barker said it was decided on Tuesday morning that the community lunches couldn't continue.
He said last week volunteers provided takeaway meals at the church door for residents.
"But we've decided we can't even do that," he said.
"It's kind of heartbreaking.
"Just when you think of the community that is created (at the lunches).
"It's such an important part for some people's lives."
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Reverend Barker said the lunches had run consistently since 2008 with a short break for volunteers over Christmas time.
"There's a group of people that come every week, there's others who get there when they can and there's new people always coming," he said.
"Everyone is welcome, it's a safe place."
Reverend Barker said the church held it's last service on Sunday and they were looking at different ways they could keep in touch with people.
"Hopefully we'll come out of this kinder and fairer," he said.
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