A centuries-old faith tradition of nourishing anyone in need has found new energy and purpose in America's turmoil. In New York City, a group of about 30 cooks has made and served more than 145,000 free meals in just 10 weeks. They arrive at 4am three days a week to methodically assemble vast quantities of basmati rice, dal, beans and vibrantly flavored sabzis for hospital workers and anyone in search of a hot meal. This isn't a soup kitchen or a food bank. It's a gurdwara, the place of worship for Sikhs - members of the fifth-largest organized religion in the world, with about 25 million practitioners. Providing for people in need is built into their faith. An essential part of Sikhism is langar, the practice of preparing and serving a free meal to promote the Sikh tenet of seva, or selfless service. Last week, a dozen volunteers in Queens served 500 portions of lunch, 1,000 beverages, and dessert to peaceful demonstrators.

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