Stories from the Basement

Stories From the Basement: January 2017

By Donna Clark RN Director

January means cold weather and the first night of the cold weather shelter CESP (Community Emergency Shelter Project) lived up to that assumption. Deep snow, cold wind, and ice and snow covered roads made for a very difficult start of this year’s project. Cross Pointe Church of the Nazarene stepped up to the challenge and housed 13 men to kick off CESP 2017. By the end of the week they had housed 28 different men and then moved the project on to Wesley Temple United Methodist Church.

Moving means moving 36 cots, and at least two large plastic trash bags of personal belongings per person at 7 am Saturday morning. The next church then has to set up the cots and separate the personal belongings so that the guests can find their property when they arrive at the church at 5 pm Saturday evening. Each church has to supply people to prepare food, register the guests, provide fellowship to the guests, and overnight supervision. This is no small task for any church but it presents especially large challenges to the smaller churches.

It never ceases to amaze me the commitment of the hosting churches. Certainly a shining example of how they show God’s love to the lost, the least and the last of our community. Hosting a 7 day shelter is a huge undertaking and often multiple churches assist each other to meet the needs of their guests. The mission of this project is to prevent men from freezing to death in the worst months of the year. We have succeeded over the past 12 years in meeting this mission but participating churches are drifting away from the program and we hope the project can continue in the future.

If you are interested in volunteering or learning how your church become involved contact Brenda Jorden or Donna Clark at 410-677-0757.

Matthew 25: 31-46