So a few reflections on my time at Signs of Hope LA are in order. It was good, mixed the theological and philosophical with the practical quite well, and was rather up-lifting.
On Sat. we visited three non-profits, each of which were radically different. The first was a Catholic Workers kitchen. The group lives in what amounts to a monastic community, living, working and playing together. Their basic needs are met by the community, and they are given $15/week for discretionary spending…wow. They completely live their life for the benefit of the homeless.
The second was a community theater group called Cornerstone, which does thought provoking, conversation starting plays among groups that would not otherwise talk. They were not a Christian group as such, but I loved what they were doing. I think I would really like to be a part of something like that at some point.
The last was an evangelical church called Church of the Nazerene, and their sister organization Centeral City Community Outreach, located in ‘skid row’, the area of the city specifically zoned for the homeless, (it is legal to live on the street there.) Again, wow, they were amazing. Most people that choose to live in or near skid row to ‘do ministry’ leave within a year, the man we are talking to has been there 15 years, beginning in his early 20’s no less…amazing.
To know what I really learned, we would have to have a conversation centering on one of the three site visits, or the bullet statements I put up in Signs of Hope (3). But you get the idea just reading the statements and descriptions.
Don’t have much else to say, on a scale of 1-10 I would give it a 6, though if you came to it burned out, you probably would have gotten a better impression, it was very up lifting.