As the clouds of a rare late fall nor-easter drift overhead dumping rain on Route One right outside my third-floor apartment living room window, I'm catching myself feeling very down about a couple of Kensington-based relationships that I hold dear and don't seem to be going well. I'd appreciate your prayers.
In the midst of that very real sadness, I'm filled with joy as I reflect on this past Saturday and the people who came to the party in the park.
On Saturday, three women from Steven's Bags, an incredible organization in the Philadelphia westerly suburbs, merged efforts with three previously unknown-to-them men from Angels in Motion an incredible organization located in the Philadelphia northerly suburbs. They were joined by one of my most excellent coworkers from RCA and her favorite man. These eight suburbanites merged efforts with three members of Urban Hope Church an incredible community of Christians located in North Kensington.
The star of all of this merging was Steven himself and his caregivers as he distributed 20 of his bags to the people of the streets of Kensington.
The actual 'stars' were not the hosts of the party. The actual factual stars were the invited guests who in the days leading up to this party seemed shocked that they, they who carry labels such as
would actually be invited to a party.
At one point, Rob, Urban Hope's most excellent Bible Study leader, stepped back from the crowd to estimate how many people were gathered around the various tables that were set up for cupcakes and clothing circulation for this party in the park. He estimated 70 at that particular moment.
There were many other people who participated in this party's preparation. As described on the Steven's Bags Facebook page:
Huge shout out to Wegmans in Downingtown for donating 150 cupcakes for a Girl Scout service project and.... Another HUGE shout out to the Cadettes, (6th to 8th grade) from GS troops 4029 and 4393 for decorating those cupcakes for our outreach yesterday. They were so popular and brought smiles to so many faces, it was such a joy to be able to offer them.
Another very much appreciated cupcake contributor is Ryan Holder, an amazing man and a Philadelphia-based gourmet cupcake baker.
An Unexpected Blessing…
The following day, Sunday, I was visiting the people on the streets a few blocks south of McPherson Square. Many of these people could not get to the party for their own understandable reasons. The level of regret from these people who our LORD labels as
Inspirational human beings
made in the image of God worthy of
was obvious and apparent.
Many thanks to EVERYONE who made this party such a joy - the STARS and the hosts…