The annual observance of Lent is the special season for the ascent to the holy mountain of Easter. We are all called to a life of Gospel conversion as we pray, fast and give alms. The words of Pope Francis immediately come into mind:
“We have to learn to be on the side of the poor and not just indulge in rhetoric about the poor! Let us go out to meet them, look into their eyes, and listen to them. The poor provide us with a concrete opportunity to encounter Christ himself and to touch his suffering flesh.”
At The City of St. Jude, we have so many families that come to us in need of a helping hand…looking for a hand up and not a handout. Steve and Asha, along with their two children, is one such family. They came to St. Jude because Steve recently lost his job and Asha wasn’t able to work due to a chronic illness. They used up all of their savings that they put back for a rainy day. The struggle came because there were too many rainy days with no end in sight.
Almost shamefully, they came through the doors of our food pantry, looking for enough food to last them a week or so. With the help of our caring staff and volunteers, we were able to comfort Steve and Asha, and encourage them to remain prayerful and vigilant.
After preparing several bags of dry and can goods, along with some frozen meat, Steve, Asha and their two children went on their way. They seemed relieved and very grateful. They kept thanking us for being there and comforting them.
A couple of days later, Steve called us back, almost in tears because he’d found a job. He kept saying “thank you…thank you all, for being there for us.” What he didn’t realize is that they were a blessing to us as much as we were to them.
You too are a blessing! To help another person changes the lives of both the giver and the receiver. There is a reciprocal value in charitable works. It draws us together as one human family under God. Without your support, we could not help the many people that we do. I am a firm believer that when we help others we help ourselves…And God blesses us as we bless others! St. Francis noted that it is in giving that we receive.
As we look forward to Easter and the Resurrection of Jesus, we continuously prepare our hearts and minds for spiritual renewal. Once again, we ask that you open your heart and support us as we go about helping as many people as we can this Easter season. May God bless your generosity in abundance.
All donations will be solely used for the mission of The City of St. Jude.
As always, thank you for your continued support. Happy Easter!
Yours in Christ,
Rev. Daniel Aloo Owuor, F.M.H.