By Gil Rosen
For the last year I have had the privilege of volunteering at Georgetown Ministry Center. What began as a desire to use my cooking skills to help feed homeless men and women has turned into a passion of connecting with others.
Being involved with GMC has introduced me to something Gunther Stern mentioned at our first meeting. Gunther suggested that while food and shelter are a challenge to the homeless population, the biggest hurdle is mental health.
Gunther’s statement resonated with me on a deeply profound and personal level. As such, I have created a program that attempts to offer people the opportunity to benefit from the one thing that helped me cope throughout my travails—namely, love! While I can never offer the tremendous support that my nuclear family and community offered to me, I can offer one of the chief ways through which that love was expressed: food.
My friend Wynne Sitrin and I have tried to make our Thursday lunches a model for how we can share love with the guests at GMC. We have prepared and served meals for the past year and found the process both rewarding and therapeutic (nothing like sharing love to make you feel loving).
In this vein, we would like to invite other members of the community to prepare and serve meals at GMC. You do not need much time—just a willingness to roll your sleeves up and cook.
Wynnie and I may have some helpful hints, but it is ultimately pretty straight forward. To make the meals we generally buy the ingredients from supermarkets. We prepare the meals at home and serve them the same day. This project has been an incredibly rewarding experience and we would love some help. You can help in three ways: cooking, procuring food, and coordination.
We are looking at expanding and streamlining a program we started with Norman’s Farm Market. John Norman has generously donated some of the fresh fruits and vegetables that we serve on Thursdays and we would love to coordinate a way of using the “extras” to create nutritious food for the center on other days.
Also, we need additional cooks who would be willing to take up other days. Already a group of women who call themselves “Women Who Hike” began a similar program on Tuesdays—we are both vying for top ratings from the GMC food critics. 🙂
Finally we need a way to coordinate this program so that we can ensure regular meals at GMC. If you are interested in contributing to this endeavor please reach out to me at (301) 980-1139.
On a completely different note, I have also been conducting a beading/story sharing workshop on Tuesdays. If you have old costume jewelry or beads lying around the house please donate them to our program. If the beads have a story, please join us to share both the beads and your story. We meet at the Grace Church courtyard on Tuesdays at 10:30.
As part of the beading for change program, we begana scavenger hunt. We want to encourage members of the community to come to the garden and find the bracelets that we bead. If you are interested in participating in this game, these are the guidelines. Every Tuesday we will hide grace bracelets (these sacred bracelets are beaded in a pattern that reminds the wearer that only through divine grace, love, and action can we bring change to the world). Participants should wear the bracelets as a reminder that it is through our individual actions that the world will change.
One meal and one bead at a time.