In the fall of 2017, as I was reading the Springs Rescue Mission newsletter I noticed an item about their need to create some additional space for homeless women. Many of these women who were without shelter were being beaten and/or raped.
This hurt my heart, so I called to see if there was something special my small group could do for these women. It was suggested that we could surprise them with stockings for Christmas.
Last year we provided 72 stockings and these “least among us” women were overwhelmed that someone else would think of them in such a personal way.
This past November I was getting questions from many of the 2017 participants as to whether we would be doing the stockings again this year. So I contacted SRM and she asked if we could do 75 stockings and included a list of suggested items for the stockings.
As my group had just finished a study on anxiety, I was determined that this would be from the Lord this year and would be from those He wanted to participate. I emailed many women at PRC as well as friends and acquaintances from other venues.
The response was slow at first, but then really kicked in and from “unexpected by me” avenues — to the point that we had 81 stockings. The Lord brought to my mind three ladies who were overly stressed and I suggested they forego the stockings for this year and rest in this gifting to them.
Ladies who participated in this gifting declared to me that they had such fun shopping and filling stockings that they were blessed themselves. Several stockings came from IF table groups, Bible study groups and other small groups, which turned to parties! There was also generous giving from those who could not do complete stockings but wanted to participate anyway in the form of money, lotions, cosmetics, stocking caps, and knitted headbands. We also included this year Scriptural tracts, bookmarks, and small books.
Many are already thinking of how they can get ready for next year’s stockings, like knitting or crocheting scarves and caps in advance!
My heart was overwhelmed with the response from these dear joy-filled women wanting to share their love and joy with these “least among us”.
Written by Pam Johnston
The day after Christmas, Pam received this message from the Springs Rescue Mission:
Wow! The women were overwhelmed by the generosity of you and others who participated in putting together the stockings! They could not believe that someone they didn’t even know would do this for them. Our shelter Coordinator shared this:
“The ladies were ecstatic…humbled, beyond belief grateful! It was fun to watch them gush over the new fluffy socks, and see them share with each other.
They kept saying “This was awesome, Thank you soooooo much! It was fun. “
Your ladies really blessed each woman who is staying with us. Acts of kindness like this go a long way with our women facing homelessness, especially those who have fled domestic violence. Many of them have not been treated well and it is hard. They have no hope in things getting better. Through other women such as you and all the ladies who helped, you are standing by them cheering them on saying, “we believe in you and you deserve better.”
So thank you Pam, so very, very much for caring and loving on the women staying at Springs Rescue Mission! May the Lord bless each woman who participated in this project with great joy in giving!