Have you ever reached out to help someone up and noticed how your body moves? You clasp hands with the person, lean back on your feet to carry a portion of their weight along with yours while using your arms to pull them up. No one part of your body is performing the same action. It’s a network of puzzle pieces that fit together just right to accomplish a task. This past March, Redeemer Community Church became one of many puzzle pieces partnering with the Hesed House to serve the homeless in the community.
The Hesed House was established in the early 1980s by a group of churches and individuals to help provide meals for the community’s homeless. Approximately three decades later, this ministry still provides meals with other services enabling homeless people to get off the streets and into housing.
Redeemer is partnering with the Hesed House by making a meal once a month to bring to the ministry. Maribeth Uhlenhopp initiated the idea of working with the Hesed House and connects with community groups and individuals primarily via email to recruit people to help. As this partnership came to fruition, Advent Christian Church graciously opened up their kitchen for use, and on March 1st, I had the pleasure of using the kitchen to help make a meal alongside Maribeth and Shelly Hale for one hundred people.
While Maribeth brought supplies for coleslaw and mac and cheese, Shelly brought fixings for pulled pork sandwiches. I brought myself and did what they told me. After making the meal, Niko Hays picked it up and delivered it to the Hesed House. Altogether, there were over one hundred pork sandwiches, ten pounds of pasta and approximately 30 bags of pre-made coleslaw.
“It feels very big when you’re making lunch for all those people, and when you’re dropping it off, it feels very small,” said Maribeth Uhlenhopp.
A meal once a month doesn’t seem like much; yet, we don’t know who was able to hear the gospel after eating one of these meals because their stomach wasn’t grumbling. We don’t know what kind of long-term impact one meal will play in someone’s life or the type of relationships it might foster. Yet, we can know that through this partnership, we actively participate as members of the Body of Christ, reaching out to help the orphan, the widow and the needy. Participation in reaching out has multiple facets.
“We need financial support; we need people who are willing to sign up either with their care group or friends or a small group of people willing to make the meal,” Maribeth said.
At Redeemer, we can work together to give, help prepare food, and even deliver meals as part of a network reaching out in love to pull people to their feet as part of the Body of Christ, the Church.
If you would like to learn more about getting involved, please contact Maribeth Uhlenhopp at firstname.lastname@example.org.