WELCOME FROM HAYWOOD STREET:
Praise God for all of the New Years Day help brought by Ms. Mary’s close and extended family. Together, they rolled the silverware, cooked in the kitchen and served our friends around the tables.
For the month of January, Ultimate Ice Cream has dedicated proceeds from all Vanilla Ice Cream sales to benefit Haywood Street. We thank them for their commitment to this yearly fundraiser!
2. Prepare a meal for Respite! Sign up here.
Holocaust survivor, psychiatrist, and author Victor Frankl wrote, “Even more people today have the means to live, but no meaning to live for.” He believed that life’s meaning comes from three sources: purposeful work, love, and courage in the face of difficulty. I have found all three in abundance at Respite.
For the past four years I have enjoyed the indescribable pleasure of doing a job I would do for free, while gleaning priceless wisdom from strangers who quickly became friends, and co-workers who I will forever consider family. The process has helped me to recognize God’s divine providence in my life, and to understand what radical grace really means.
I remember when Robert cut his hand open in the garden, and while I was helping him wrap it up he said, “You know, you’re not terrible at this; have you ever thought of being a nurse?” Honestly, until that moment I hadn’t considered it.
Sometimes God works through us in mysterious ways, and Robert still has the scar to prove it. About a year later I began my prerequisites, and next week I will leave my position at Respite to begin the Nursing Program at AB Tech. Without me knowing it, Respite was giving me the foundation for a future I didn’t know I had.
I have had more than my fair share of incredible experiences here. About 200 souls stay at Respite every year, which means I have been blessed to have been a companion and friend to about 800 people. We have two walls in Respite covered with pictures of the folks who have stayed with us. I feel love and affection for every face on those walls. When I look at them I can recall so many amazing memories, along with the unforgettable lessons they have taught me.
I have watched miraculous healing. I have witnessed folks who are in unbelievable pain display incredible compassion. I have seen fearless faith in the face of the most dire diagnoses. Through these experiences I have gained a deep and abiding faith in healing.
I am forever in debt to this community, and baffled by my own inability to articulate how huge a role this place has played in shaping me. To quote our sage Steve Noblitt, “Sometimes the only thing you need to say is, ‘Thank you.’”
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