Yesterday morning, Jeff (’09 grad) and the kitchen crew prepared a wonderful breakfast for about 40 Helping Up Mission alumni. While many guys were already at work or on their way at that time, others were able to make it and we had a great hour together – eating and reconnecting.
It was quite a group. A number of the guys live off campus, but many live in our graduate housing facilities. Some had just finished the night shift and were getting ready to go home to bed, while others would be heading off to work, shortly.
The earliest graduate in the room was Keith (’97) and the latest was Anthony (last week!). The oldest graduate present was Allen (70 years old and a ’00 grad), while the youngest was Tim (31 years old and a ’09 grad). All but one guy had graduated on my watch, so I was having all kinds of warm fuzzy feelings getting to see everybody – including some guys I had not seen for a while.
One guy (Keith ’08 grad) had just recently been laid off and that day we were able to connect him up with our community partner, Business Interface, to help him with new employment. Another, Vaughn (65 years old and ’02 grad) is doing the final work for his State of Maryland high school diploma by way of the External Diploma Program (EDP) operating through our education department.
Jason (’09) lives and works in the city wrote me a note yesterday afternoon. He said,”so it was nice to come ‘home’ to such a warm welcome and to see all of you and my other brothers in recovery again – definitely the spiritual recharge I needed today, right on time.”
I love my job, because I get to see so many guys change their lives and continue to walk it. God is good, all the time – all the time, God is good!
One day at a time,
Pastor Gary Byers
Spiritual Life Director