Thursday, October 29, 2015

Some times I LOVE technology!

Some one sent me the link to this website.

I LOVE it!

Watch the video!

A very creative way to reunite families!

Saturday, October 24, 2015

Here is a great video of the work that Caritas does.

Last week we hosted 43 women from Caritas.

Friday, October 23, 2015

A BIG Thank YOU!

Hey Awesome volunteers,

I wanted to write and thank you all for making this past week a success. 

I hope that you had a wonderful experience helping the most vulnerable members of our community.

Believe me when I say that lives were changed this past week.

Two ladies committed their lives to Christ.

Three women came back to Church this past Sunday after they left. We sent a bus out to pick them up.

Numerous relationships were either formed or in some cases rekindled.

I wanted to pass on this video from Caritas that shows the power of many volunteers, supporters and staff coming together to make a difference in the lives of those who are struggling

While we only see the women for a week, you can be assured that your love and service had an impact on many lives.

Thank you again for your loving service.

Nelson Parker

Thursday, October 22, 2015

One slight change

Some times something so simple can make life just a little bit easier.

I thought I learned this lesson last year when we hosted Caritas (Homeless Shelter), but I needed to be reminded again this year as we hosted 43 women.

Last year is was Saturday evening and I had invited the women to attend church on Sunday.

Someone came up to me to ask for an iron.

I thought it was a strange request because I thought to myself "why would I have an iron at work?"

She then informed me that she wanted to press her clothes for Church.

The light bulb came on in my head!

I said no we didn't, but I will run home and get one.

My house is only two blocks away.

I thought to myself if this is what it will take to get someone to church, no problem!

Now let me bring you up to date to last week when the women were here.

I planned ahead and got the iron ready for Saturday night.

Sure enough the iron got plenty of use that night.

Then when I left Saturday night I packed up the iron to take it back home.

My wife and daughter were looking for it, when it went missing.

On Sunday afternoon one of the ladies asked for the iron.


I was dumb founded again!

I never stopped to think that maybe they would want to iron their clothes every day!

The next day an iron and board were donated to Caritas!

Sometimes we just need to put ourselves in someone else's shoes to better understand the needs.

Another example came a couple of days latter, when it was explained to a volunteer, don't put the lunches in paper bags.


I thought to myself lunch bags make perfect sense.

NOT when it's raining!

Simple, yet we don't always look from someone else's perspective!

Plastic bags

Friday, October 16, 2015

My heart hurts

I went to the grocery store and saw this woman sitting on the corner.

My heart sank and I got very frustrated.

The reason is that I knew her and she was staying with me at the church.

You see this past week the church has been hosting 43 homeless women(Caritas).

I see women on the streets all the time, but this day it meant so much more.

She was sleeping at our church during the night, but during the day she is taken back to the streets to sit all day and wait for the evening to come.

This woman has some physical limitations that would keep her from a lot of mobility.

I believe we can do so much better for those less fortunate.

What would this picture look like if it were 20 degrees outside or it was cold and raining?

There needs to be a day space that enables people to be constructive and build self worth and dignity.

I use the term "day space" as opposed to shelter because it has negative connotations.

Not to mention "homeless" is much worse!

The day space could be the central point for services as well.

This church has the space, but not the labor capacity to pull this off.

I pray that more foot soldiers will come on board to help make this possible.

We can partner together to make this city a much kinder and loving place to be.

THE Church (as a whole) has the ability and capacity to make this happen!


By the way I did go speak to Anne (not her real name) and made sure she was OK.

She claimed she was waiting on someone and that she would see me that night.

Thursday, October 15, 2015

Intruder is crushed by 3,000lb safe!

A man's look back on his family life after 44 years.

This past week Atlee Church has been hosting 43 homeless women.

It is always a joy getting to know the ladies.

This one particular lady came up to me last night to say she had a story to tell me.

It was a story about a man who broke into a church to steal the safe in the office.

She got the story from her husband.

She had spoken to her husband, Rickey Massenberg about where she was staying for the week.

He asked her for more details and it was at that point, he told her that his father had died at that church trying to steal a safe.

As soon as she told me I was in a state of shock.

Back in July one of my fellow pastors had sent me the following article from the Free Lance Star paper that dated back 44 years!

Read article below.

News Article

Last night I told Rickey's wife that the murder weapon was still in the office.

I took her to see it.

Then this morning Rickey left me a voice mail asking if we could get together.

I went downtown to pick him up.

I brought him to the church.

He shared with me stories about his father and how strong of a man he was.

His father stood some 6' 5"+ tall and as Rickey described him, "he didn't have a six-pack, but a twelve pack".

Rickey was describing his dad's abs. 

At one point his father could lift 1,100 pounds above his head three times in a row.

I got to hear a lot about his family life.

When we got to the safe he was taken back by the flood of memories he had of his father.

He never thought he would see the day that he would see the safe that killed his dad.

His Dad died two days before his birthday.

Rickey and his wife both said to me that his dad "never should have tried to steal from the house of the Lord".