Today, Thanksgiving Day 2010, many of our men went home to be with families for the holiday. In many cases, just the fact that they were invited was miraculous, because not too long ago there was very little communication between them. The focus of our long-term Spiritual Recovery Program here is not on restoring family relationships, but on each man addressing his own recovery issues. Yet, family restoration has become an absolutely natural outgrowth of that man’s recovery efforts and the unconditional love of his family. We are so very happy for each one of those families today.
But in the place of those who went home for Thanksgiving, we had over 75 friends show up to serve Thanksgiving dinner this afternoon and over 100 others come and eat it with us. We had a wonderful time together and all our volunteer servers brought much joy to the whole house. And we ate a really great meal! Everyone seemed so full and happy that I wasn’t sure anyone would come back for the evening meal – which everyone around here knew would be leftovers from that great lunch. Well they did come back for more. In fact, tonight we served for almost an hour and a half straight.
We also had some more guest servers this evening. Now in the last 10 days we have had Baltimore’s Mayor Stephanie Rawling-Blake, City Council President Jack Young, and a dozen members of the Baltimore Ravens - quite a lineup – to serve meals for our guys here. So why should tonight be any exception? This evening’s serving crew was Ravens Head Coach John Harbaugh, his wife Ingrid and daughter Alison, Coach Jack Harbaugh and his wife Jackie (Coach John’s parents) and Victor Hoskins (former Secretary of the Maryland Department of Housing and Community Development) and his wife Diane, long time friends of Helping Up Mission. Coach Harbaugh led us in prayer for the meal and, man, did we ever eat.
Over the last week, Helping Up Mission has had press here taking pictures of all the celebrities who have come to support what we do. Today, a whole bunch of other friends labored throughout the day and evening with no media or fanfare, they just came to give a good word and share a helping hand.
Thanksgiving Day 2010…we thank God for everyone who invested some time, energy or resources in what we are doing here. God has truly blessed Helping Up Mission.
Grateful just to be a part,
Pastor Gary Byers
Spiritual Life Director