Feed 500 isn't just an event. We hope to spark a movement of Good Samaritans able to respond to needs of the poor and oppressed daily. We call this, Feed-a-Few. Check out Helen's story:
"About two weeks ago, I was walking towards my campus because I had to run some errands there before school started. I was almost there when a homeless guy approached me and asked if I could buy him some soup from a restaurant past my campus. I told him that I couldn’t because I had to get to campus. He then immediately backed out and apologized for wasting my time and disturbing me, which made me feel guilty. I walked away with this guilt still inside me till I heard him call me again. He asked if I could buy him food at the deli store right in front of us, so I immediately said yes. He wanted some cold cuts and a loaf of bread, and also politely asked if he could have some snacks. I said sure, he could get anything he wanted. I asked if he would like some coffee because it was cold outside, which he didn’t refuse. It was funny to realize that just before I met him, I swore to myself that I would try to save up some money since I’ve been spending it extravagantly for personal gains, but this opportunity was too good to miss. I asked for his name, and he said his name was Bill. He had an injured knee which made him difficult to walk. I helped him carry the food to his cart, and we talked a little bit about the knee. He said he was going to get surgery at a hospital. I asked how he could afford the bill, and he responded Medicaid. With that we parted ways, blessing each other and promising that I would pray for him.
I could tell from the deli store manager’s eyes that this was an unusual situation, but who knew what he really thought of? Maybe I just wanted to prove him and everyone else a point that I had learned back at NYCUP when I was taught to have compassion for the homeless. These were also people trying to survive each day. Even a simple gesture of asking for their names can mean so much to them. Unfortunately, after that experience and upon starting my grad studies, which required me to commute to the city every week and face the homeless every time, I grew heartless and made excuses for myself. I did feel slightly guilty for my ignorance and apathy, but as this became a ritual for a year and half, I ignored the problem altogether and occupied myself with my own problems. But ever since I took that step to be more involved at my local church and building a community within the worship team just two months ago, I started to feel more comfortable with people that I didn’t know. Graduating from Rutgers where I had a strong community of brothers and sisters who encouraged me, I had a hard time trying to find that in this new environment. I made pretty awesome non-Christian friends, but I became more and more spiritually thirsty without realizing it for a while. It was until the end of last year when I decided to make finding fellowship near my home a priority. When that finally happened, my spiritual side which I had lost in touch with had almost come back, and I began to feel more alive again. I think this transition helped me become more open to the homeless issue in the very city where I commuted to at least 3 times per week, so I finally got to see Bill as a human being that needed help. I praise and thank God for having Bill approach me and helping me see the needs and struggles of the homeless once again."
I'm so thankful for Helen's faith and commitment to reflecting on the things that God is teaching her and having a living faith. We want to see more of that! And LoGOFF will help us get there!