Provident, loving God, protect and defend me in my weakness and guide me with your light.
Sometimes, as servants of Christ in our ministry of working with the poor, the homeless and the unfortunate, we become worried because we are running low on supplies. When the pantry is empty, it is good news! Now we can show that we trust God.
We love God, and through this love comes our love of our brothers and sisters in Christ.
- About four years ago a fellow volunteer and myself were meeting with some people who were having problems making ends meet. Our last interview was one that will stay with me forever. Mr. X was a man in his forties, a big man, about six two, two hundred pounds, with a wind-burnt face. A workingman who looked completely defeated and tired.
- He was separated from his wife, and his fourteen-year-old daughter lived with him. Their house burnt down while he was at work, and his daughter was at school. They even lost their pets. He and his daughter were living in a tent beside the house. Three days after the fire, the building company that he worked for laid him off. Without any money, home, or job, he went to see one of the church pastors in the area. The pastor advised him to go to a shelter but he refused to take his daughter to a men’s shelter.
- Our conference is small and we have guidelines when it comes to the amount of money we can give out. We gave the max, which was one hundred dollars. I usually don’t carry any cash, but that day I had a twenty-dollar bill and when I gave him a handshake, I put it in his hand.
- That is when tears rolled down his face. I told him not to give up, that God, when we ask him, will help. This was on a Tuesday afternoon. On Wednesday morning, I went to my Rotary meeting. While maintaining confidentiality, I told our meeting this man’s story and asked if we could help in any way. One of our members came to me after the meeting and said that her daughter and granddaughter were moving in with her. There had been a bitter divorce. She said that Mr. X could have all her daughter’s furniture, dishes, etc.
- Mr. X had furniture, but no house, but when his ex-wife heard about the furniture she went to see him. She offered her brother’s empty house for him to live in, and said he would not have to pay any rent for a year. I made a couple of calls and was able to get a job with transportation for him, as a labourer.
- Do not be afraid to give what we have in our conference, food, money, etc. If we are helping our brothers and sisters, we are doing God’s will.
- Ask Christ for guidance and it will be there. Please take time each day to pray and reflect, and to thank God for what we have, and ask for his guidance in our daily interactions with His poor.
Parnell Kelly, Spirituality Committee
Atlantic Regional Council