31 August 2011

Crazy for Jesus

I had the privilege of meeting a really cool volunteer couple the other week as they came in to lead chapel. This guy plays his guitar (very well, I might add) at different shelters in the area and talks about Jesus between songs, and his wife provides gospel literature. I was so encouraged to meet a volunteer who wanted to share the gospel and was using his musical gifting because he’s as crazy about Jesus as we are!

One of the reasons I love working with volunteers is being able to meet brothers and sisters in Christ from all different places, doing different things, bringing glory to our King. I’m continually reminded of how diverse we are in the body of Christ. The Church is all of us (1 Corinthians 12:14-31), and the blood of Jesus Christ covers denominations, socio-economic status, culture, and even family blood lines.

It’s awesome!

Steven Lund
Volunteer Associate


30 August 2011

We are all equally loved by Christ

Having no children of my own, I had never been able to understand how my mom is able to love me and my three siblings equally. For years I was convinced that she loved my little brother more than she loved me, and my sisters are convinced that my mom loved me more than she loved them. My brother says that he knows he is the favorite! For years my mom would say that they she loved us all equally. I didn’t buy it! That is until recently.

I have just finished my second, month long, WorkNet class. My first class had 9 students, my second had 3. At the start of the second class I was convinced that there was no way that I would enjoy this new class nearly as much as my first. I had fewer students, and the class was 5 days shorter so I had to cram 20 days of work into 15 days, there would be no time for fun and games! How surprised I was!

While the class was smaller, they were very eager to learn. They asked great questions and we had good discussions. One student in particular, John, brought a vast amount of fun and energy to the class. He would often have us laughing until our sides hurt! Because this group was smaller we were able to move quickly through the material. I soon fell in love with this small group of students.

As the graduation ceremony concluded, I sat in the classroom reflecting on the similarities and differences between the two classes. Just like my brother, sisters and I are very different, so were these classes. Each class had its own personality and group dynamic; as well as its own struggles and challenges. But each class touched my heart and changed me in many ways. If you were to ask me which class I loved more, I would have to say that I loved them both equally. I finally get it. I understand what my mom meant when she said she loved us all the equally. I am excited to start my next class in a few days, to open my heart once again to another group of amazing people. I am looking forward to seeing them grow and develop skills that will help change their lives. And to see how in turn they will change my life.

Noelle Pee

29 August 2011

If You Give a Company a Truck to Stuff…

You just might be surprised at what they can do in one day! IKON has supported Open Door Mission for years. Their latest endeavor has been to sponsor Stuff-a-Truck at the workplace. They invite their employees and “neighbors” to stuff the truck with donations of all kinds. The IKON’s Stuff-a-Truck this time was amazing. They collected 450 pounds of clothing, 260 pounds of shoes, 500 pounds of housewares, 110 personal care items and a bicycle!

…and if you give King of Kings a truck to stuff they can fill it with 632 pounds of food, 1788 pounds of clothing and 161 pounds of personal care items.

As you can see it is a great opportunity for the employees or congregations to clean out gently used items they no longer need or have an easy drop off for new items they want to donate. The clients at Open Door Mission and Lydia House benefit and everyone is blessed.

Would you like to sponsor a Stuff-a-Truck at your workplace or church? We would love to provide this great opportunity for people to give and help those in need. Please call me if you would like to Stuff-A-Truck for Open Door Mission and Lydia House.

Maggie Cope
402-422-1111 ext 1554

26 August 2011

Happy Day, WorkNet Graduation Day

Today was Open Door Mission's WorkNew Graduation. 3 students graduated today from this great course. Here is a little more on what WorkNet is.

WorkNet Solutions is a job readiness class offered by the Open Door Mission’s Community Education Department. The class is available to the clients of the Open Door Mission and to community members. This is a 3-4 week course taking the learner through booklets that discover their work motivation and how to overcome the fear of the job search; they determine the learners values, skills, and fields of fascination; and where and how to job search. Upon completion of the class the learner will have the knowledge and ability to tackle the job search process, the interview process and be equipped to hold steady employment with the opportunity to reach their dream job within the next 3-5 years.

For more information, or to join the class, please contact

Noelle Pee at 402-829-1549 or npee@opendoormission.org

25 August 2011

Walk A Mile In My Shoes

Open Door Mission is hosting its fourth Annual Walk-A-Thon! On Sunday, September 18th, between 11AM and 5 PM, please join us in a one-mile walk from downtown to Open Door Mission. This is the same path that so many homeless people choose when seeking help.

Thanks to the community and people just like you, resources are available to provide hot, nutritious meals, safe shelter and life changing programs. You can walk at your own pace with friends and family. And once you’ve arrived at the Mission, you’ll be served homemade soups and breads, made especially for this day by chefs from local restaurants.

You’ll have a tour of Open Door Mission, and see firsthand all the services provided through your generosity, and life changing volunteer opportunities are available. You will receive a free Open Door Mission tee-shirt and Water bottle.

Call Maggie today at 422-1111 or visit www.opendoormission.org to find out more information Join me as we “Walk a Mile in My Shoes” making a difference right here, right now.

24 August 2011

Being “Salt” & “Peppering” Open Door Mission with Donations

The Salt & Pepper Motorcycle Club does more than just ride; they give back to the community. The club brought in almost 100 pounds of personal care products for our clients of all ages. Their donations help us provide the basic needs to our clients and their families. We appreciate their support of Open Door Mission and look forward to them volunteering at the mission and doing even more drives. May they be blessed with safe rides as they have blessed Open Door Mission with their donations.

Would you like to give back to the community also? Please call me if you would like set up a drive to help those in need. Open Door Mission has a variety of ongoing needs and with your help we can meet them in order to serve our community.

Maggie Cope
Open Door Mission
Communications Coordinator
402-829-1554
mcope@opendoormission.org

19 August 2011

“Unmentionables “Deserve Honorable Mention

Soma Intimates at Village Point shopping center has done a wonderful job of meeting a need at Lydia House and Open Door Mission that most people don’t even think of or talk about-that is the need for women’s intimate apparel. Soma Intimates collected new and gently used bras from their staff and customers through the month of July for the women served through Open Door Mission and Lydia House. They collected over 230 bras during their campaign to help those in need. Thank you to Jackie and her staff at Soma Intimates for meeting a need that is often “unmentionable” but is needed.

Open Door Mission and Lydia House are always in need of underwear, especially new underwear and socks. Please call me to set up an “Undie Day” at your church, workplace or organization. You can make difference in someone’s life by a simple gift of a pair of socks or underwear. Can’t wait to hear from you!

Maggie Cope
Open Door Mission Communications Coordinator
402-829-1554
mcope@opendoormission.org

18 August 2011

Are you Hungry Today?

The best God can give to any person is a hunger for Himself. There is nothing we can do to make ourselves hungry for God. All salvation comes from God, but if we will give him the chance, He will instill a hunger within. If that hunger is fed, He will intensify it until it is a burning passion of our life.

If we are hungry, He will fill our need, and the greater our appetite for Him is, the more of Himself He will give to us. That hunger is a promise of His presence.

If He is near you, cry out to Him.
If you sense His presence, call out to Him.
If you feel Him close, reach out, because in that moment He is can be found, and you ought to lunge for Him.

He will not take all your troubles away, but He will protect you in the middle of trouble. When the storms come, He will be your hiding place, and He will endure them with you. The storm will rage around you, but you will be in the middle of Him, and His presence is safety. He will even enable you to sing in the midst of the storm. That hunger for Him becomes the greatest gift that anyone can be given.

“Hallelujah, I have found Him
Whom my soul so long has crave!
Jesus satisfies my longings;
Through His blood I now am saved.”

Blessing to you and hope you all have a very hungry day!!

Celeste Norman


16 August 2011

Walk A Mile in My Shoes


Hungry and homeless people in the Heartland don’t have the luxury of air conditioning or transportation. That’s why Open Door Mission is hosting its fourth Annual Walk-A-Thon! On Sunday, September 18th, between 11AM and 5 PM, please join us in a one-mile walk from downtown to Open Door Mission. This is the same path that so many homeless people choose when seeking help.

Thanks to the community and people just like you, resources are available to provide hot, nutritious meals, safe shelter and life changing programs. You can walk at your own pace with friends and family. And once you’ve arrived at the Mission, you’ll be served homemade soups and breads, made especially for this day by chefs from local restaurants.


You’ll have at our of Open Door Mission, and see firsthand all the services provided through your generosity, and life changing volunteer opportunities are available. You will receive a free Open Door Mission tee-shirt and Water bottle. Call Maggie today at 422-1111 or visit www.opendoormission.org to find out more information Join me as we “Walk a Mile in My Shoes” making a difference right here, right now.


11 August 2011

Beat The Heat



Open Door Mission is in need of bottled water and fans.

* Water for homeless men, women, and children to prevent dehydration
* Fans for people in the Heartland who do not have air-conditioning

Help the hot and thirsty this summer by partnering with Open Door Mission to provide bottles of water and fans. You can bring your donations to any...

BAG AND SAVE LOCATIONS

108th & Q
18th & Vinton
51st & Harrison
76th & Dodge
50th & Grover
156th & Q
114th & Dodge
156th & Blondo
144th & Center


CHARLIE GRAHAM AUTO BODY

4206 Leavenworth Street, Omaha


09 August 2011

Smiling to go back to School

Can you believe that summer is almost over and school is getting ready to go back in? The first day of school should be a happy time for boys and girls. You might even remember your school days and how it felt wearing a new school outfit on your first day of school.

For many homeless and needy children in the Heartland, the first day of school can be a real challenge; being homeless is hard enough on them - not having a new school outfit and shoes to wear to fit in with their pier can be embarrassing.

But thanks to the generosity of the community, over a hundred plus homeless and needy children are getting 2 new outfits, shoes, socks and underwear so there are ready to go back to school next week. Just look at the smile on this little boy, Omar as he shows of his sneakers and outfit with Candace, President/CEO of Open Door Mission.


Thank you to the community for making a difference right here, right now in the lives of homeless and needy children in the heartland.

08 August 2011

Walking in the Spirit

I grew up in the church and often heard the pastor preach that we as Christians must “walk in the Spirit.” But this summer I experienced what it means to walk in the Spirit in a whole new way. Over the past month I have had the privilege to lead Open Door Mission’s Bible Day Camp. This camp hosts activities in the morning and field trips in the afternoon while also providing three nutritious meals a day to Open Door Mission residents and community members. As you can imagine, this amazing program is a lot of work.

Through this experience I have learned to trust God in a deeper way by surrendering control to Him and depending on Him for the grace I need for each day. At the end of the day, we make our plans but the Lord directs our paths. And that, I have realized, is what it means to walk in the Spirit. Thanks to all those who have partnered with us this summer through prayer, volunteer hours, and donations!!! Your support has been a great blessing.


Rachel Fisher
Children and Youth Director




05 August 2011

Blessed by Volunteers & Donors

The past few days have been full of excitement right outside my office doors! That’s because this year, the Back to School Bash is held at the Admin Building and the conference room has been converted into a shopping center!

We’ve been blessed by many church groups, corporations, and individuals donating brand new clothes, shoes, jackets, backpacks and other back to school items for this event. As I walk through the hallway on our floor, I see dedicated volunteers hanging up clothes, sorting shoes, and organizing everything into neat piles based on gender and sizes. Their hard work is paid off when we hear the “oohs and ahhs” of the children when they first come inside to go “shopping”.

Each day a new group of children get to come over and go shopping and pick out new school clothes. Right outside my office, I overhear tiny little voices of enthusiasm chattering and giggling about the new pink dress they picked out or how cool his new Spiderman shirt is that matches his new Spiderman tennis shoes! Open Door Mission is very blessed to have such wonderful donors and volunteers partnering with us, and I thank God for them each day!

Frank A. Clark said “Real generosity is doing something nice for someone who will never find out.” These children will never know who our donors or volunteers are, but we as staff certainly do and we definitely appreciate each and every one of you!

Mimi Hannor
Open Door Mission

04 August 2011

The Simple Joys…of Shopping

Sometimes you forget how wonderful and caring people can be. One of the joys of working at Open Door Mission is you get to see how God works in everyone’s life, from staff to clients to donors. Our Back to School Bash collects new clothes for homeless and near homeless children. I am privileged to head up that drive, encouraging others to give new clothes for children they may never meet. Every year I wonder will we have enough clothes and shoes, will people be able to help, and will the children appreciate the love sent their way through the clothes donations. Oh me of little faith.

This week and last the clothes came in by the carload! From the Elk Horn Lutheran Church in Iowa to UPS at the airport to Raytheon to King of Kings and a host of other individuals and organizations the clothes filled racks and tables and shoes are stacked. Everything was soon ready for shopping thanks to some great organizers and sorters. The Administration building second floor has become a children’s clothing shop where shoes and clothes are free to the children we serve.

Then the children came. It is such a blessing to see their happy faces and hear shouts of glee when they find that perfect pair of Iron Man shoes or a shirt to match a skirt. What joy to help each child feel special as they chose shoes, underwear, socks and at least one new outfit. We sometimes forget the simple joys denied so many, but this week at Open Door Mission we rejoice in generous donors and precious children that get the joyous experience of shopping for new clothes. Thank you everyone for blessing these children’s lives and mine too.


I love my job!


Maggie Cope
Communications Coordinator

03 August 2011

Also and Too

Have you ever wondered why, or even thought it to be unfair, to have so many problems in your life? I don’t know about you but I sure have. Just recently it seemed there were an unfair amount of challenges occurring in my life and as I prayed to God for answers and encouragement another stressor would appear. “What in the world am I going to do?” became a reoccurring theme in my thought process. “Why is all of this happening to me? What did I do or what is it that I am doing to deserve all of this? How can I make this work?” No answers, only dead-ends. I was overwhelmed.

Finally I reached my wits end and after arriving I wondered what took me so long to get there. It was not until I reached my wits end that I realized there is where I needed to be. The answers are not in me. I need help, not just praying and seeking God, of course, but also reaching out and sharing my burdens with my Kingdom family. I began to talk about it with my church and in addition, I opened up in an evangelical ministry course (TUMI) offered through Open Door Mission. In this course we as fellow classmates have become extremely close.

An amazing thing happened when I did this. I found that everyone seeking citizenship in God’s coming kingdom are also being tested. I discovered that they too are having financial problems, illnesses, and broken relationships. Many of us were also feeling overwhelmed. I felt relief as I identified God’s hand in all of it. We shared our challenges and we shared tears of joy with one another. Again I felt relief as I identified God’s hand in all of it. Sharing my trials with my family did not make them go away but, the clarity in recognizing that the precipice of the Lord is where he takes all of his chosen and then calls them back. I am blessed to be part of.

A psalm of Moses:
Make us glad according to the days wherein thou hast afflicted us,
and the years wherein we have seen evil. -Psalm 90:15

Jesse Powell
Men’s Emergency Services Coordinator

02 August 2011

Star Students

My favorite part of my job is taking my Star Students on outings. To recognize hard work and accomplishment, I have started nominating Star Students each week. These are the adult students who have been focused, made great progress, and have had a great attitude during the week. There is no set number nominated each week – everyone is eligible. The Star Students receive a certificate recognizing their work. Then they are entered in the “Grand Prize” drawing. At the end of the month I draw five winners. The winning Star Students then get to choose an activity as a group.

In May we went to the dollar theatre and saw The Adjustment Bureau – we got popcorn and pop. In June we went to the Rockbrook Concert Series and got treats and the gas station. Last week we went to the dollar theatre and saw Thor – again with popcorn.

For many people, these activities may seem like no big deal. But my students love these outings. It is their chance to get off campus and feel “normal”. It is also a chance for us to talk and get to know each other, and for me to connect with my students. I’m not sure who enjoys these activities more – me or them.

Micole Harms
Learning Center Director