Yesterday, I had the distinct honor and priveledge to volunteer at a soup kitchen in downtown Jacksonville. The Schultzbacher “home” for the homeless is a true blessing to Jacksonville. I wonder if God is blessing us for our love for the poor and oppressed?
A couple of weeks ago I returned from a medical Mission to Honduras. I believe it is much easier to do a mission to a third world nation than to be in a city in America. The bankruptcy of our spirit is truly beyond me.
So on St. Patrick’s Day, I arrived at 2 pm and began helping in the kitchen alongside some of the residents. There are no windows in the kitchen until around 6 pm when the serving windows to the family side and the men’s side are opened. Then the residents of the home are fed first. I served the meet in an assemply line of pretty good food. And then they came.
I was overwhelmed at the amount of human beings came for this meal. We were fortunate to offer seconds. So many people are homeless. We tend to see them as numbers.
On this particular night, we had a little party and talent show of the residents. It was surreal to see these people. I felt like I met many of them at AA and Alanon meetings I attended with my mother. The residents and staff were the most genuine people I had ever met. Sure, they had problems in the social dynamics…but so do most of us, especially me!
Rebecca, my friend who invited me, works at this “home”. She pointed out a women a few feet away from us who had never smiled in the whole time she had been staying there since at least January. And there she was at this “party” grinning and carrying on. What joy!