Sunday, September 1, 2013

Happenings of The Lamb

Happenings of the Lamb
Inaugural Online Newsletter
Fall 2013
"You will keep in perfect peace all who trust in you, all whose thoughts are fixed on you."  Isaiah 26:31
We, at The Lamb Catholic Worker plan to put out a seasonal online and snail-mail newsletter (four times a year) with inspirations, happenings, updates, and needs of our budding community.  It will be "organic," so to speak, and may evolve or change over time.  We'll trust in the guidance of the Holy Spirit through the Sacred Heart of Jesus, the Immaculate heart of Mary, St. Joseph, Guardian of Truth and purity itself,  Dorothy Day and Peter Maurin.  We are also upheld in prayer through many of you Sick and Suffering Co-Catholic Workers offering up, powerfully, the pain and suffering of your illnesses and other crosses for us, in addition to Pope Benedict Emeritus' prayers (as he has assured us with a letter and picture sent [that we framed!]).
WE ARE PRAYING FOR OUR HOUSES, please pray for this too!  We long for a home for the poor here in the tradition of the Catholic Worker. One of us has prayed several years for this particular set of large abandoned houses to renovate modestly and call our Catholic Worker home. Dorothy Day and Peter Maurin, we need a miracle!  With that in mind, here are comforting words from God through sacred Scripture today:
"God, in your goodness, you have made a home for the poor." (Psalm 68:6-7) - the Psalm refrain!
"The father of orphans and defender of widows
is God in His holy dwelling.
God gives a home to the forsaken;
He leads forth prisoners to prosperity.
A bountiful rain you showered down, O God,
upon your inheritance....
in your goodness, O God, you provided it for the needy. "
(Psalm 68: 4-5, 6-7, 10-11)
In the same spirit was the moral of the Gospel today from Luke: (14:1,7-14) "When you hold a lunch or dinner, do not invite your friends or your brothers or relatives or your wealthy neighbors, in case they invite you back and you have repayment.  Rather, ... invite the poor, the crippled, the lame, the blind; blessed indeed will you be for their inability to repay you.  You will be repaid at the resurrection of the righteous."
 “The greatest challenge of the day is: how to bring about a revolution of the heart, a revolution which has to start with each one of us. When we begin to take the lowest place, to wash the feet of others, to love our brothers with that burning love, that passion, which led to the Cross, then we can truly say, ‘Now I have begun.’” 

— Dorothy Day, co-founder of the Catholic Worker movement
PRAY FOR SYRIA!  We must mention that first.
What exactly is our community doing while in this holding pattern waiting for our first monetary donation, or our first house of hospitality for mainly foreign-speaking homelss women and children?
First, we are building community and commitment.
To describe, we are setting aside more and more prior commitments (even good ones), to make time to be together in prayer, common meals, and extra time for particlar tasks to get this off the ground.  We are committing to living a pure and prayerful life, one embracing Lady Poverty, to ready ourselves for when we can move into a CW house.  Some already live together at The Lamb Catholic Worker Volunteer Corps House here.
We are building a base of Apostolic work commitment to the poor now:
--We are baking cookies for 175-180 men and women and serving them at the Open Shelter
-- We are committing to time sorting and giving away clothes, as well as distributing food at the Bishop Griffin center at Christ the King parish
-- We are assisting a family of 10 in trying to live a normal life by giving them food and diapers once a month, taking the children to mass, bringing them to the Lamb Volunteer Corps House for brunch or dinner, and taking them places (Ohio State Fair, swimming, etc.)
-- We are assisting a group of very low income boys every night with a snack after school, tutoring, sharing lives, sharing their poverty
-- We are committing to a Catholic presence at least once a month at the E. Broad St. Founders abortion facility. We pray the Rosary for these women, men, unborn babies, other children on their families and their situations, in addition to some sidewalk counseling.
--We have committed to Sunday CCD to the population at Christ the King Church
--We have gone to Appalachia with the Appalachian Project for 11 days this summer to build a house for a poor family of 11, to split and pile a winter's worth of wood for a widow and her 3  children, etc., etc.
--We are looking toward seasonal Clarification of Thought - gatherings for ourselves and the wider community on topics of social justice, with a presenter and discussion
We strongly desire to do a LOT more though, especially direct hospitality for and with the homeless in a Catholic Worker community. Our greatest update is that our EIN, or Tax I.D. number - 46-2489540 for our nonprofit corporation, is finished and ready to be utilized!  We have four stellar priests on our board as well: Msgr. Marv Mottet of Davenport, Iowa and Columbus priests, Fr. Denis Kigozi, Fr. David Schalk, and Fr. Justin Reis.  We cannot begin in a larger more authentic manner without you though.  All of you 9,800+ people from around the world who have viewed our online site- please remember us on your prayer list and on your charitable donation list, if possible.  We need a large amount to purchase the abandoned city block (basically) that we feel the Holy Spirit has in mind for this. While we have received the volunteer corps house, two dressers, two beds, and a set of single mattresses, our hands are tied right now until we get funding (although there are other avenues we are pursuing). Please, please pray for us.  Pray only that God's Will be done, nothing more and nothing less. Without God, we cannot succeed, but with God, we cannot fail, as Fr. Schalk said in his homily today.
Community status update: Elizabeth McFadden, Steubenville recent graduate and Master's of Social Work student at Ohio State, recently joined and moved in; and Andy Pasternack temporarily went on to Columbia University for a year for grad school.  We all have no doubt that he will be back though, especially when this gets up and running.

Our Needs
Four sought-after houses and large lot in between for city gardening (current value approx. $180,000.00)
Two or three sets of bunkbeds and their mattresses for our volunteer corps house

Your greatest gifts are your prayers and fasting for us!