Chance encounter

By Father Christopher Kubat   

Every Monday morning, the staff at our main office divide and conquer. We divide the cleaning duties and conquer the dirt and grime in the building. This saves hiring a cleaning service so more money can be given away in both emergency services and grants for counseling for those who are unable to afford the total cost of psychological services for some reason.

Last Monday, after having gathered trash from multiple wastebaskets in the building and exiting the side door to place trash in our dumpster, I spied a man on the street corner, pulling a portable upright shopping cart (which seemed to carry most, if not all, of his belongings). Among his belongings were some canned beverages. I could not read the labels, and his speech was slurred.

After greeting him with, “Good morning!” he proceeded to cry, telling me his dad died several years ago on his birthday. As we prayed together, he pointed to one of his multiple tattoos, which was a cross. It was during the recitation of the Our Father he began saying repeatedly in a loud voice, “Oh sweet Jesus, sweet Jesus!” until we were finished. After giving him a sack of food and other items and instructing him that we have a daily lunch program, he went on his way.

Then later that very day, leaving the office after 9 p.m., while walking to my vehicle, a young woman who was walking the streets asked me for some pocket change. After a brief moment, it was obvious she is intellectually disabled. I introduced myself and after inquiring, she informed me she was living in a small apartment several miles from our office. She was wandering the streets. Ever since this encounter, I have seen her several times wearing the same dress, walking and walking…. I have been praying that as she continues to wander the streets, no one takes advantage of her.

The man and woman I mentioned are just two examples of the people we minister to on a daily basis. This is the reason we want to expand services to them under the patronage of St. Mother Teresa of Calcutta. We want to create a place not only where we can better serve them, but where we can pray with them in front of the Blessed Sacrament. As with all our clients, we not only want to help them bodily, but spiritually as well, leading them with love to eternal life in heaven.

As we get set to celebrate the solemnity of Pentecost, remembering the descent of the Holy Spirit upon the Apostles and Mary in the upper room not long after the Ascension of Jesus into Heaven, let us cooperate in a humble manner with the Holy Spirit so the gifts and fruits of the Holy Spirit animate our souls and enkindle the fire of charity for our neighbor, especially those who are most vulnerable.

Come Holy Spirit, fill the hearts of your faithful. Enkindle in them the fire of your Love! God the Holy Spirit, have mercy on us!

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