A Volunteer’s Encounter with the Homeless

The following article was written by a member of Trinity. For the past couple months, this member has been part of a team of Trinity members who serve at My Brother’s Keeper on the first Thursday of each month. We hope that this perspective of one of our missions will delight, inspire, and enlighten you.

Volunteering at My Brother’s Keeper homeless shelter breaks many of the stereotypes of the “homeless” we may foster. Volunteer “Visitors”, sit with the homeless during chapel and the evening meal and help provide a family-like atmosphere in the dining room.  This volunteer talked with five men who were already seated at a table. She was going to leave and find a place to sit but they quickly got up to bring another chair to their table so she could join them. While awaiting the signal to proceed to the food window, the group spent time in conversation. When it was their tables’ turn to walk up to the food window where dinner is served, the men held back insisting the woman volunteer go ahead of them. “I normally would wait until all the homeless were served so I said…”No, no, you fellows go ahead of me,” the volunteer urged. “But, the men insisted that I go-ahead of them. For just a while, these men got to be gentlemen again. It was their way of expressing a gentlemen’s courtesy…something the homeless normally wouldn’t have an opportunity to express. Or maybe it reminded the men of a time in their lives when they weren’t living on the streets…but had their own home and dining room where they could show courtesy to their guests whom they served first,” the volunteer added. Pastor Frusti in the April Trinity Gram reminded us that , “…from now on, we regard no one according to the flesh.” (2 Corinthians 5:16) – that is we do not judge anyone by earthly standards such as by the clothing they wear, the homes they live in, or the job they have. Serving the homeless at MBK is like Jesus saying, “What you have done to these, the least of My brethren, you are doing unto Me” (Matthew 25:40). (Why not volunteer a couple of hours of your time and join us as a visitor at My Brother’s Keeper, the first Thursday of each month. We meet at 1000 N Grand Traverse at 6 p.m. and attend worship in the chapel, then enjoy a great dinner with the homeless. Your stereotypes of the homeless will be broken—and God may give you an opportunity to witness to your faith in Christ.)