Christmas is almost here, and the past two months have been no exception to what is always the busiest time of the year at Star of Hope! We now are serving 1,200 men, women and children each day, two-thirds of these are women and children. We anticipate serving 45,000 meals in the month of December alone. Already, we’ve had many wonderful Christmas activities including our Adopt-a-Family program, Tree Lighting ceremonies and worship services, and fun activities for the children.
In the midst of all this busyness, I have noticed this year a profound sense of peace among our Clients, in the midst of their bout with homelessness. Our Women & Family Emergency Shelter serves homeless women and families in crisis in their lives … the sudden loss of a job, escape from domestic violence, eviction from their homes … very difficult situations that can bring out the worst in people facing a holiday in such despair. But this year, at their Tree Lighting Ceremony a couple of weeks ago, we experienced a joyful, peaceful time together, as their children enacted the birth of Jesus, and as we sung “Joy to the World!”
That night, the room was filled with hundreds of people of all ages, different backgrounds and life experiences. Most of them did not know the person sitting next to them or what had brought that person to Star of Hope. And even though you could still hear a few cries of babies and children in the background, everyone’s attention was drawn to the message of the birth of a Savior … OUR Savior, Jesus, as we worshiped and sang together. Christ was truly at the center of that evening!
This season has been the same at all of our locations … it has been an unusually peaceful and joyful Christmas time this year at Star of Hope! And your support is what provides this place of peace and refuge for the hungry, the weary, and the lost. You are providing their home for Christmas this year, and we thank you for helping make Christ the center of the season for them all!