December 10, 2020

And they added to their numbers daily…

“It’s the MOST wonderful time of the year!” For some people it is, and for some of us, it is not.

When you think through the things that make the holidays have such high expectations, I am sure some of the thoughts you have center around the people with which you share those special days.  Your sister’s love of playing (winning) card games, your mom making her special baked beans, the laughter of little kiddos in the family, memories of grandpas who played Santa and snuck extra cookies to you and friends joining together for carry-in dinners and fun.  These relationships are the knots that hold our tapestry together and without them, our life often does not feel full and complete.

The life situations from which many of the guests come: generational poverty, untreated illness, substance use, or transiency, frequently have degraded an individual’s circle of relationships down to no one.  And so, their hope of a happy holiday is very slim. At Cherry Street, often our staff and volunteers become temporary relationships for the guests that utilize the Mission.

When we come together as a community and begin to care for each other, similar to the way we see Jesus’ followers caring for one another in the early church, “sharing what they had and adding to their numbers daily”, we begin to provide the opportunity for people to once again gain a spark of hope for a happy season.  Your participation in this process is vital to providing a glimpse of the possibility of having a whole and healthy circle of family and friends with which to share life.

playing board games

Much of what happens throughout the year at Cherry Street is providing guidance to developing these relationships.  Yes, those are with family and friends, but also, they are with larger community bodies such as faith communities, physicians, and employers.  When you consider all the relationships that encircle your own life, you can imagine how many relationships need to be restored when someone comes to us with no one in their circle.

Thank you for being an on-going source of support for individuals re-building their lives with Cherry Street.  Providing access to opportunities for stable and vibrant relationships walks side by side with safe and affordable housing and reliable income to create an outcome of community independence.