Have you ever experienced the humiliation of being helped? Had to swallow your pride and let someone do for you what you felt you ought to be doing for yourself? It’s not a great feeling. A lot depends, though, on the attitude of the one doing the helping.
Twenty years ago or so, I was a single mom with three small children. For years I was in school or working, or both, while raising my daughters. The essentials got done – feeding the kids, homework, laundry. One of the things that didn’t get done during the week was washing the dishes. The dishes used to pile up until it was exhausting just looking at them. I was embarrassed to have anyone see the state of my house.
Now and then my Mom would come over. Without a word about it, she would just start washing dishes. It meant so much to me that she would just help like that – non-judgmentally, just doing what I didn’t have time to do myself. It was real help, and the way she did it mattered, too.
I used that story two weeks ago when I went in to paint the bathroom of the little casita where our friends are living. They’re working six days a week I told them that story and said I was just passing on what my Mom did for me. It’s what family does for each other. And now the bathroom feels better (and the mildew is gone so it’s healthier, too).
Next we’re going to tackle the sala, the main room that serves as kitchen/dining/living/bedroom and storage area. That’s too big a job for me to do by myself on a Saturday, though. There’s furniture to be moved, etc. I expect it will take all of us most of a day. Walls need to be scrubbed before painting, and we’ll do the ceiling, as well.
SO, this Sunday, January 22, there will be no Mass at St Romero’s. Wherever you are, you could offer a prayer for our aching muscles as we stretch and bend and lift and paint! And a prayer that the transformation of this room will carry the message: you are worth more than this. You deserve better than this. You are so worth the effort and time this transformation takes!
So are you, by the way. Know it in your bones.
Blessings and love to all,
PS Oodles of thanks to everyone whose donations made this possible. You have helped to make a difference!
PPS hard as these friends are working – six days a week – our friends that went to Florida are working even harder. Fourteen hours a day, seven days a week, hurrying to get the crops in before the frost. Pray for them!
Oscar Romero Church
An Inclusive Community
of Liberation, Justice and Joy
Worshiping in the Catholic Tradition
Mass: Sundays, 11 am
St Joseph's House of Hospitality, 402 South Ave, Rochester NY 14620