The 2010 Feast of Tabernacles at Utica, Illinois was a wonderful event for the whole
family. In addition to the regular excellent Bible teaching, food,
activities and fellowship, a project was organized to make a lot of repairs
improvements to a nearby homeless shelter in Ontario, Illinois. Over 100 brethren volunteered to help.
Several brethren skilled in construction made the plans ahead of time and
had materials ready.
This short article cannot cover all that
was done, but the value was certainly worth many thousands of dollars to
the shelter. The brethren painted the building, both with a sprayer and
with brushes. They built a shed from scratch in that single day—the
progress evident at right. Cleaning, both inside and out, landscaping,
heating and cooling repairs, and other vital tasks were accomplished.
A great blessing from
this project was the working of people of all ages together. There were old
people working inside, numerous adults working everywhere, and teens and
young people all finding jobs to do. Some of the brethren were simply
involved in bringing food and water to the others. The place was filled
with a sense of teamwork and accomplishment.
While this may
seem to be a very drab existence, it is far better than sleeping on the
street. The shelter staff works hard with each of the homeless people to
find other housing and jobs for them before they close in the late spring.