By Kathy Bourgault
Family Promise North Shore Boston is a nonprofit interfaith hospitality network that provides temporary shelter, meals, hospitality, and case management for families experiencing homelessness on the North Shore of Massachusetts. As one of many Host Congregations, CTR provides a place of shelter for several families in our parish hall, for one week, every three months. Our next host week is 4/30 – 5/ 7.
I first became interested in Family Promise in September of 2013, after Fr. Malcom gave a powerful sermon and im- passioned plea to “help the homeless for two hours four times a year” at Christ the Redeemer Anglican Church. Little did I know the deep passion God would develop in me for this program, eventually leading to my becoming a Co-Coordinator of Family Promise at CTR. After hearing Fr. Malcolm’s sermon, I began researching more about Family Promise on their website, familypromisensb.org and was most impressed by:
-How long the program had been running (29 years now).
-The number of states in which Family Promise is located (41 and counting).
-The way the program is run:
Strict guidelines and involvement from the families.
Volunteer support given to the families through mentoring programs for current and “graduated” families enabling steady progress.
The success rate of families nding jobs and obtaining housing.
-The way “graduated” families give back to the program after they leave.
Once I started working with Fr. Malcolm, Ann Droppers (Co-Coordinator at CTR), the Family Promise North Shore Boston sta /volunteers, and guests, I was inspired by their stories, passion, and gratitude. The testimonies of those who have been helped by the program are also a tremendous source of joy. Parishioner Tina Ames has now joined our core team as Coordinator of the meals and food for the guests.
Serving with Family Promise has given me a deeper appreciation of all the blessings I have in life, especially a home. Jesus said in Luke 12:48 – “When someone has been given much, much will be required in return; and when someone has been entrusted with much, even more will be required.”
I would encourage anyone to experience the joy of doing what Jesus did best – serving those less fortunate – and get involved with Family Promise North Shore Boston. Many hands are needed to make our host week run smoothly. Just one two hour slot would help us greatly! Our next host week is April 30 – May 7. We still have some volunteer slots available. If you are interested in serving this week or in the future, please contact Kathy, Ann or Tina at firstname.lastname@example.org.