Monday, March 17, 2014

WITNESS FOR JUSTICE for Homeless at Sanctuary of Sarasota

Homeless Ministry Team from Mary Mother of Jesus and St.Andrew UCC Support Sanctuary of Sarasota in Florida ,  Homeless Camp Threatened with Closing

Bridget Mary Meehan, ARCWP
March 15, 2014

On March 15, a dozen volunteers from Mary Mother of Jesus Inclusive Catholic Community and St. Andrew United Church of Christ gathered to express prayerful solidarity and to share food with the homeless who are serviced by Sanctuary Sarasota, led by Valerie Guillory, from Trinity Without Borders. The City of Sarasota has issued a notice to vacate the homeless camp where Trinity Without Borders provides support services. Valerie said: “It’s a given that the camp has to be closed. We need funding released so people can have homes not a place on the floor.”
When we arrived, Valerie shared the schedule for the day which was divided into classes, painting and prizes for the children and later an adult sing along. 
We began with a prayer circle to pray for a just and compassionate resolution to the homeless camp closures so that the homeless will be provided adequate food, housing, and  other necessary services.  I asked everyone to join hands and express solidarity with all those in the camp by sending loving energy to help bring about justice for those in need and homes for the homeless. "Amen" everyone affirmed!

We shared over 70 sandwiches, fruit, drinks and cookies.

Our ministry team joined other individuals and volunteers: a local Girls Scout Troop, Jorde, a gifted artist who was there to provide paint adventures showcasing rocks and the oneness of nature.
Jorde, the artist
Jorde's decorated bus
Jorde's  bus and prizes for children

Bob Ferkenhoff, Lee Breyer,,Carol Ann Breyer, Bridget Mary Meehan., ARCWP
Before I left, a woman from the homeless camp asked me to pray with her.  We joined hands and I prayed that God would send angels to protect, guide, and embrace her during the coming days and weeks.
Gini C. Hyman, wrote: on her Facebook page: "The most touching thing I observed was the Bishop praying with a woman who had just lost everything, including whatever meager belongings she had at the Camp. She was drug free and seriously depressed, without hope. Then I saw Bishop Bridget Mary with her.”

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