Dear Friend of Loaves & Fishes,
How much sacrifice does it take to make a single meal? Thirty minutes of your time and some rice and beans? Maybe five dollars at McDonalds? Perhaps a long walk to the Loaves & Fishes dining room?
We all make sacrifices. Some for ourselves and some for others.
This year I am inviting you to join me in celebrating the choices that were made to allow our Loaves & Fishes community to serve seven million meals.
One choice, by two individuals, thirty two years ago, began a ripple effect that has changed the course of our region.
Dan and Chris Delany, we’re inspired by the philosophy and truth of the Catholic Worker movement. Dorothy Day, one of the founders of the movement called each one of us to take personal responsibility for our neighbors, “If your brother is hungry, you feed him. You don’t meet him at the door and say, “Go be thou filled,” or “Wait for a few weeks, and you’ll get a welfare check.” You sit him down and feed him.“
That is how Loaves & Fishes started. Two individuals agreeing to sit down with their brothers and sisters and feed them.
It couldn’t be simpler or more profound. Just answering the call to live out the works of mercy. Feed the hungry, give drink to the thirsty, clothe the naked, welcome the stranger, visit the sick, visit the imprisoned, bury the dead.
These works of mercy are not just something that can only happen here on North C Street. There is nothing special about the wood, concrete, and metal that makes up the buildings of Loaves & Fishes. The true essence is you and your co-laborers, who take the time to meet eye-to-eye with the downtrodden and be present for them. That’s something that can happen anywhere and anytime.
Just as Chris and Dan weren’t looking to start a soup kitchen, and Dorothy Day wasn’t looking to start a movement, so too, I’m not interested in more programs. No, what I’m interested in is a revolution of the heart. If we are to truly change the world then it must first begin in each one of us. I want to see a day when our entire community is so moved with compassion that it’s simply not possible to be homeless in our town.
It must begin with you and me, in our hearts. Why don’t you invite a friend and join me for a special interfaith prayer service on June 4th, 7:00pm, at The Cathedral of the Blessed Sacrament. When we all come together in a spirit of love, compassion, and hope there’s no telling what changes might take place.
Peace and Love.
Sister Libby Fernandez Executive Director Loaves & Fishes
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