Please Know...

As I come to know these fine people, they share with me more of their personal and sensitive stories. Their collective story is what I am trying to share with you as my way of breaking the stereotypical beliefs that exist. "Blog names" have occasionally been given to me by the person whose story I am telling. Names are never their actual names and wherever I can do so, I might use the opposite pronoun (his/her, etc.) just to help increase their privacy.


Wednesday, January 23, 2019

My Heart Hurts Today…

Since December 31, 2016, I've been sharing the true stories of men and women on the streets of Kensington as they deal with addiction, more properly known these days as Substance Use Disorder.  All of these stories have been disguised in one way or another so as to preserve anonymity.

For the past two years and two months, I've visited these people on the streets.  I've sat and stood with them in the heat of summer and the cold of winter.  I've laughed and cried with them.  I've heard stories of inconceivable heartbreak and unspeakable joy. 

I've also royally screwed up a time or two and asked for forgiveness.

During all of these experiences on the streets, I've never felt threatened or in danger in any way. 

I've come to know as human beings, the men and women of the streets of Kensington who, in some cases, at one time called the streets of Aston and Glen Mills Pa.[1] "home." 

I've sought to be a listening ear to these people as they have shared their sufferings of abuse and all sorts of physical and emotional traumas that led them into their current circumstances.

This has been, by far, the most magnificent opportunity to come alongside suffering souls that I could ever hope to find half an hour away from my suburban residence.

Over these past 26 months, I've written 181 blogs (prior to this entry) that have shared my experiences with you. 

Over these past 26 months, I've received donations of clothes, water and various forms of care packages.  I am so very thankful for these donations.

Over these past 26 months, I've received financial donations from people who wanted to financially support this ministry effort.  One of those donations in 26 months has been through a church offering after I spoke there.  One other donation came from a local pastor.  My largest donor has been a man who claims no interest in matters of Christian Faith but supported what I was seeking to do.  And, in full disclosure, one of my donors, a very few dollars at a time, was a drug dealer who hated doing what he was doing and prayed through the depths of his Roman Catholic roots that someday he could stop.  I've not seen him in over a year.  I am very thankful for these donations!

Here's why my heart hurts so much today…

Over these past 26 months, I have invited many people to join me on these visits.  Some of these invitations have been announcements on Facebook.  Others have been specific, one on one.  Not one person from my home area has joined me in a spirit of ministry outreach on these visits…  Not One.

My heart hurts today!

Eight days from today, Emerald City will be no more.  The City of Brotherly Love has evicted this community[2] so as to make room for townhouse/condominium communities already under construction up the street.  These men and women of the streets whose Entity Named "Addict" will not allow them to seek treatment nor housing, will scatter and run the much higher risk of death by isolated overdose. 

These good people, these literal former neighbors of your Delaware County Church will scatter and some already have.  This ministry effort will continue in some new way.  

I hope and pray that you will choose to join me.[3] 




[1] My home area
[2] They must remove themselves by 10:00am on Thursday, 1/31/19.
[3] For further reading about how my heart hurts today, I invite you to read my recent blog titled: The Urban "Samaritan" - A Message to the Suburban Church


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