If you can find your way to the back of the church, all the way back, it’s there. Racks of clothes and shelves of household goods, toys and books. All kinds of treasures. And every second Wed. we opened it up to our ESL student moms and their kids. Faithfully and steadily they came to check out the treasures and fill their bags with much needed things.
Then we got the idea of opening it up a few Saturdays to our surrounding neighbours. It would be an opportunity to reach out and meet the people around us.
So on Saturday April 22 and May 27, we did just that. Signs were posted, coffee pots were put on, and we waited, not sure who would show. But show they did, along with their stories, stories of courage, caring, and just plain fun. Debbie’s listening ear and extra big smile drew them out beyond an, “Hello, how are you?” We met a Bosnian woman who shared her first-hand account of a family escaping a war torn country, happy now and successful in Canada’s borders…but a horrendous journey to get here.
An elderly couple found a small reminder of a son they lost years ago. She held a small plastic figure that she found among the toys, while sharing his story. This was an odd encounter as this toy hasn’t been around in years and for them to find it here in a small back room of our church was their own private miracle.
One young man connected with Mike and came back to attend our church service the following Sunday.
Then there was this wonderful encounter with a warm, enthusiastic Christian couple and their daughter from Brazil. We made a special connection with them, and you’ll meet them this week at Friendship Sunday on June 4 where they’ll share part of their special story.
The volunteer staff would like to thank each of you for your donations over the past year. You’ve brought a lot of smiles to our ESL moms and squeals of delight (literally) to their beautiful children.
We would also like to thank a mysterious “elderly woman” who told our lady from Bosnia about the Storehouse Saturday sale and brought her to our door. We couldn’t identify her as the lady isn’t even in our targeted neighbourhood. So…beware lest we entertain angels unawares!
By the way, if we can meet these people in a small back room of the church, how many more can we connect with on our August 25 fun day?
Written by Marita Vandertogt, on behalf of the storehouse volunteers,