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Thursday, April 02, 2009

Sacramento: Loaves & Fishes + Tent City

Our day began at Sacramento's "Loaves And Fishes" agency for the homeless. Donna Trumbo from Bayside South Covenant church connected us to this vibrant relief agency in the industrial corridor of Sacramento. We were met by an energetic nun, whose order supplies the noon meal for the 1st Thursday of every month. The boys, Mike, Lisa and I were stationed at various areas to serve meals to 391 people today (down from the normal 700)

After lunch the associate director Garrin took us on a walking tour of Sacramento's "tent city" just across the tracks from "Loaves and Fishes". There we met Christine, who lives in the tent behind her with her husband. She is disabled and barely walks to Loaves and Fishes to volunteer each day. Garrin told Christine that they found an electric wheelchair for her to get back and forth from her tent to the center. She was so excited to have mobility.

Not wanting to be "tourists" we walked the perimeter of one of the "cities" in clear view of the capitol. It was moving to all of us to see hundreds of tents, unlike any campground we ever visited. One of the boys said that what troubled him most was that this was a scene he expected to see in foreign countries, but not here at home. Again, we were moved to see Christians with compassion serving the poor with dignity and grace and trying to provide avenues out of homelessness and poverty.

Now the boys are outside the church playing a rousing game of four-square with lots of noise. Dinner later after they have a chance to burn off some steam.

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