27 March 2012

The Kitchen is coming

The kitchen is coming… the kitchen is coming – Praise the Lord, the kitchen is coming!!!

Ever feel the pressure of having food on the table? I know I have. I wake up, get the kids ready and somewhere, in the midst of the morning madness, give the kids a nutritious breakfast. Not to mention, I pack their lunches and send them on their way. From there we all rush out the door. Then after we’re all back together like a happy family, I need to find a way to get a wholesome di

Day after day, hour by hour, and minute by minute it seems all the more difficult to get a seem-ably easy task accomplished.
We’ll that’s just me with a family of three. Imagine having to have over 1,700 hot, nutritious meals prepared and served daily. Oh yeah, then somehow imagine getting that many meals served with NO KITCHEN. That’s right, with no on-site space to get it accomplished…nner served.
All to clean it up, get the kids in bed, and do it all over again in the morning.

That’s the challenge Chef Claude and his crew faced this past year with the demolition of the Garland Thompson Men’s Center. Day after day, his staff has had to load up ingredients and supplies off-site so that meals can be prepared and transported back to Open Door Mission’s campus where it is served. Because hunger doesn’t discriminate these meals are served to hundreds of men, women, and children alike. They prepared enough meals to feed those we serve, and more, as well as cleaned up after themselves to do it all over again the next day.

Well by God’s grace, they tackled the challenge! Incredibly enough, not a single meal was missed and not a single person went hungry. There’s no doubt in my mind that God will continue to anoint Chef Claude and his crew to feed the multitudes. I’m grateful to see God’s hand at work on Open Door Mission’s campus as He multiplies the fishes and loaves to feed his beloved children. Children that as in Matthew 20, the world would turn away but Christ Himself would say, “They do not need to go away. You give them something to eat…bring them here to Me” (Matthew 14:15-21).gry during the transition. In fact, last year alone our kitchen staff served over HALF A MILLION MEALS to hungry and homeless men, women and children. Now I’m pleased to say that the newly constructed Community Kitchen will open in spring 2012.

With each meal, Claude’s staff will add a good sized helping of hope and new life to every dish. And the best part is our clients can come back for seconds and thirds! No, having the kitchen open isn’t the end. It is just the beginning to all God that has in store for these precious men, women, and children. If you want a front row seat to the action, I urge you to visit www.opendoormission.org to sign-up for a Fishes and Loaves team to help serve these meals yourselves…because they need us, and we need you. In just two hours, you can make a difference right here, right now- in our community.

Hope to see you soon!
Victoria Gaskin, Executive Assistant

“15 As evening approached, the disciples came to him and said, “This is a remote place, and it’s already getting late. Send the crowds away, so they can go to the villages and buy themselves some food.” 16 Jesus replied, “They do not need to go away. You give them something to eat.17 “We have here only five loaves of bread and two fish,” they answered. 18Bring them here to me,” he said. 19 And he directed the people to sit down on the grass. Taking the five loaves and the two fish and looking up to heaven, he gave thanks and broke the loaves. Then he gave them to the disciples, and the disciples gave them to the people. 20 They all ate and were satisfied, and the disciples picked up twelve basketfuls of broken pieces that were left over. 21 The number of those who ate was about five thousand men, besides women and children.” Matthew 14:15-21

22 March 2012

Yahoo for Wahoo Middle School

So often we discount young people as being selfish or living in their own little world, but let me tell you about some very special future leaders. On their own a trio of young men from Wahoo Middle School chose to do a coat drive for Open Door Mission. They presented it to their teacher Mr. Harris, who let them do all the planning with a little guidance and direction from him. They arranged for a speaker to come and share about Open Door Mission with the whole student body, they began working towards their goal of 100 coats; and they succeed in collecting 200 coats for the homeless and near homeless.

Then they went a step further-they came to take a tour to see how Open Door Mission works at helping others Like so many before, they were amazed at the scope of what is done through and at Open Door Mission to help those in community, homeless and near homeless living in poverty. They saw how what they did will directly make a difference in someone’s life, in a family’s life, in a community’s life. I was so thrilled to hear them talk about coming back to volunteer or organize another drive and most important to be an ambassador in Wahoo for the Open Door Mission. As we finished our tour and I left them to return home they brought tears to my eyes and joy to heart when as a group of six they said they plan to make Open Door Mission their mission and place of service.others. Like so many before, they were amazed at the scope of what is done thro
Open Door Mission is blessed to have young leaders step forward with compassion and caring. Their families, school and communities should be very proud of them. They blessed my day in so many ways. If you would like to bless the Open Door Mission please contact me, I would love to be of service.

Maggie Cope
Communications Coordinator
Open Door Mission

20 March 2012

A Temporary Home

A young mom on her own She needs a little help, got no where to go. She’s looking for a job, looking for a way out‘Cause a half-way house will never be a home

At night she whispers to her baby girl“Someday we’ll find our place here in this world. This is our temporary home It’s not where we belong. Windows and rooms that we’re passing through this is just a stop on the way to where we’re going. I’m not afraid because I know this is our temporary home”

This verse from the song Temporary Home could be about many of our guests here at the Lydia House. We have several single moms who have found themselves in a place where they need a little help. Some already have jobs and are saving up for a place of their own, others are still looking for work, and still others are confronting other issues in their lives. Thankfully, the Lydia House is here for every state.

Some guests may only need a couple of weeks; others may stay for several months, especially those in one of our Life Changing programs. Remembering that this is a temporary home is an important part of guests’ stay. It is both a motivator and encourager when times are hard and it seems like there is no end in sight.

These past few months have been especially encouraging; a single mom who has been at the Lydia House for over a year found safe housing for her and her 3 sons, a graduate of one of our programs was accepted at an apartment on the bus line to her school, and two other families were accepted into a Residential Readiness program.

But even as we praise God for His faithfulness in these individuals, we continue to pray for new families and single women who move in every day. Thank you for supporting the Lydia House and Open Door Mission as we continue to be a temporary home for so many in need.

07 March 2012

Bless Us with Your Car!

Recently, my husband I have had some issues with our vehicle. This has affected every part of our lives as we now have to figure out logistics for work, school, after school activities, church and church activities with ONE car! It’s been a difficult adjustment for our family…can you relate?

Last week I had the pleasure of meeting with one of our graduates and we began the paperwork process for her to receive a donated vehicle from the Open Door Mission! Did you know that the Open Door Mission takes donated vehicles? We do!

When you donate a vehicle, you are doing something HUGE for a program graduate (and their family). In this case, it’s a single mom who is employed full time and has a son that is in school. Right now, she has to get him ready in the mornings, they wait together until the school bus comes and she walks the ½ mile to work each day. Her work hours revolve around his school schedule so that she has enough time to walk back from work and be here each day to get him off of the school bus. Trips to the grocery store are made when friends or family have time to take her.

Having a vehicle is really going to open up the possibilities for this family! She will now be able to get to work, get her son to and from school and get shopping done as needed. Her son will be able to play sports and she will be able to take him to practices and games without worrying that someone that promised to take them might not follow through. What a blessing!

If you have a running vehicle that you are not using, or know someone who does, would you prayerfully consider donating it to the Open Door Mission? We offer a Gift In Kind Receipt for your donation that can be used on your taxes and at the same time you would be blessing another family. To donate a vehicle, contact Amy Harvey at 402-829-1511. Thank you!

Amy Harvey

02 March 2012

Big Payoffs

Some jobs one works for years to get that big contract job. Other jobs are worked long and hard to snag a big business account. Even others you work for years to get that big office. Some you work to get that big group of people working for you. Still more jobs are worked to get to the point where there is a big pension/retirement so no more work is needed. All people working jobs are looking for the big payoff. Some will end the search for money, fame, or power. Some may never get the "big payoff" they search for, but they search nonetheless.

Having a relationship with Jesus opens ones' eyes to the "really big payoff." It has enabled me to see the payoff for my sins made. I have been given the payoff of a new life, a new life in Christ. Money, fame, and power will all fade and be forgotten. All three will fail in death, but the payoff Christ Jesus offers is the payoff that Defeats death. Since I have this sweet "payoff" it has become my being to help others to get it. It is my honor to tell others of the "boss" who offers the "biggest" payoff available. At the Open Door Mission this is part of my job. It is wonderful to have your job encourage you so share the gospel. In working here, you get to see other "big payoffs" as well. When a family moves forward in their life and leaves behind an old life, and you had a part (however small) in it, that is a "big payoff." When a kid headed down the wrong path recieves Christ and is baptized, that is a "big payoff." When you sit across from a student as they search the scriptures, searching for the answers to deep questions, that is a "big payoff." In short, the "big payoff's" come from Christ!

Look for, invest in, work at, bank on, and count on, your relationship with Christ to Deepen.

Taylor Clinch
Volunteer and Partner Associate

01 March 2012

An Opportunity for Servant Leadership

Three 8th grade students – John Anderson, Tyler Timm and Justin Bewley – have begun a servant leadership project at Wahoo Middle School. They realize that homelessness is a problem that affects all communities. In fact, the average age of a homeless person in the United States is nine years old! The boys have challenged their middle school classmates to bring 150 new or slightly used winter coats, jackets or sweatshirts to school. They will sort them and then pass them on to the Open Door Mission in Omaha.

Maggie Cope, a representative from the Mission, came out to Wahoo Middle School and spoke with the students. She mentioned that a homeless family often has mere minutes or hours to pack their belongings and move out of their existing home. Knowing that, those people generally pack only what they need at that time. Since many people find themselves pushed out of their homes in the summertime, they often lack winter or cold weather clothes needed at this time of the year.

John, Tyler and Justin have challenged the middle school to raise the 150 coats, jackets and sweatshirts by March 16th. If you have extra cold weather clothes and wish to donate them to their cause, you can drop them off at the middle school office.

8th graders Tyler Timm, Justin Bewley and John Anderson are leading a cold weather clothes drive at Wahoo Middle School.

If you would like to make a difference right here in our community and would like to organize a drive for needed items for Open Door Mission please give Maggie a call today at 402-829-1554 or e-mail her at mcope@opendoormission.org