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Living Word Provides Shelter for Men Experiencing Homelessness

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From Strangers to Brothers

The Living Word (Glen Burnie, Md.) church opened its fellowship center’s doors to 16 men experiencing homelessness, providing shelter, food, and friendship from Oct. 23-30 as part of its annual Winter Relief Program.

In collaboration with House of Hope, a community organization that partners with local churches and faith groups to shelter men experiencing homelessness throughout the winter, the Living Word church took on the first week of this season’s program, continuing its several years of participation.

More than two dozen volunteers, consisting of Living Word church members and their friends, worked together to ensure the men had all they needed during their stay. The volunteers provided breakfast, a packed lunch, and a hot meal each evening. The men were also invited to make use of the church’s shower and laundry facilities. Each evening, male church members took turns providing overnight supervision and security.

Beyond meeting basic needs, the church members also took time to get to know the men they were serving. Jackie Jackson, the church’s community service coordinator, highlighted the impact of the program on the volunteers. “When you listen to their stories, you can’t help but to feel like they’re your family member,” Jackson said. “I just wanted to let them know, ‘Listen, we love you; we want you to be here; you are our brothers now.'”

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