312 North 4th Street
Clarksburg, WV. 26301
Dear Friends of The Mission:
Last week. many of us saw a beautiful picture of a New York City police officer giving a new pair of boots to a homeless man who was barefoot. It was on television, facebook, twitter and in countless emails. In the end, tens of millions of people were witness to this random act of kindness. Most of us were genuinely moved by what we saw.
As the director of a homeless shelter, you might think that I would be thrilled with this picture. I suppose on some level I was, in that a human being was reaching out in kindness to another human being. However, my primary thought was this, “I wonder how long it will be before he is barefoot again?” Not surprisingly, within just a few days, stories began to surface of this man being barefoot.
His name is Jeffrey. He’s a veteran and has been on the streets for a long time. Mental illness, it seems, has put his life on this path. Without the intervention of God’s healing and/or consistent medication, Jeffrey is destined to remain on the streets…..and probably shoeless.
At the Clarksburg Mission, we often give numerous coats to the same person throughout the winter. There are guests of the Mission who have been in and out of our shelter for more than a decade. It would be wonderful if we could fix what is wrong with every person we serve. However, my experience tells me that the only viable solution to homelessness is HOSPITALITY: to “bring the homeless poor into the house,” (Isaiah 58:7) and to live out the words of Jesus in Matthew 25, “I was a stranger and you welcomed me.” “For the poor will never cease to be in the land; therefore I command you, saying, freely open your hand to your brother, to the needy and poor in your land.” (Deuteronomy 15:11)
Will you please be generous toward this ministry so that we can be faithful to God in caring for the poor? This year we will provide 30,000 nights of lodging, 50,000 meals, and 20,000 free outfits. WE NEED YOUR BEST GIFT NOW. THANK YOU SO MUCH FOR YOUR SUPPORT!
Hope in the Lord!!