Dear Friends of the Mission,
Happy New Year everyone! We are excited about all that the Lord has done in the past year, and we’re looking forward to serving our community in 2019. Our mission community is growing in many areas, and we are excited for the blessings as well as the challenges
While recently writing an email and sharing some of our goals and plans for 2019, I realized I was stating “plans” for items I was sure would get done, and I was writing “hope” for things that I wasn’t sure would get done. This seemed to contradict the hope we have in Christ, which is certain. The conflict of the Spirit and flesh is real and so is our hope in victory in Jesus Christ. Psalm 42:5 says: Why art thou cast down, O my soul? and why art thou disquieted in me? Hope thou in God for I shall yet praise him for the help of his countenance, and Romans 8:24-25 says: For we are saved by hope: but hope that is seen is not hope: for what a man seeth, why doth he yet hope for? But if we hope for that we see not, then do we with patience wait for it. In the Bible we read of hope in several concepts and contexts including security, desire, patiently waiting with expectation, and anticipation. So, as we approach the new year and all that lies before us, it is with hope, anticipation, and expectation that we will do our best and that the Lord will be glorified.
I would like to use this letter to introduce Jeremiah Zeiset, welcome him to our staff, and update you on the work that we are looking forward to in 2019. Jeremiah comes to us with experience in business operations and administration; he will continue to operate his Christian publishing company (Aneko Press), while helping us grow the mission as our executive director. We are looking to increase our staff, volunteers, friends, and guests we serve in the coming year and are excited to have Jeremiah on board to help accomplish these things. Please welcome Jeremiah and pray for him and the growth of the mission.
As many of you have seen, we are having our new kitchen installed at the day center. This project is well underway, and our hope is to be complete by Feb 15th. I wish I could say it is our “hope” to be completed, but I’m not that confident! It is truly exciting to be close, and we are looking forward to offering more meals and better quality meals in 2019. Our day center is open Monday – Friday from 10 to 4 and serves coffee and pastries in the morning and a light lunch. In 2017 (at the day center, rental building, grill-out outreaches, and take-home meals), we served about 2,000 meals total. In 2018 we served over 5,000 meals. Our goal for 2019 is to serve 13,000 meals in our community. This is a great time to say thank you to so many of you for crock pots filled and roasters filled and pizzas and hams and turkeys and way too many food items and supplies. It’s exciting to be part of the mission and work alongside so many great people!
Other areas of growth at the day center have been our special events nights, which are the 2nd, 3rd and 4th Friday of each month and every Wednesday evening when we do a community meal. Its humbling to see our numbers being added to daily. During these events we watch Christian movies that teach us great life lessons, we have music, and prayer, and so many opportunities for fellowship. The 4th Friday is a special time, as we don’t have a meal but dedicate the evening to prayer and fellowship in prayer.
The Bridge Street Mission Rentals continues to be an amazing work in progress as well. The challenges of living in a boarding house situation is real for everyone involved – the tenants, management, and the city and emergency services as well. The positives are many, and we are blessed to be able to manage the building. Our plans are to transition to sober living in 2019, and this will require more volunteers and help as we move forward.
Other areas of growth planned for 2019 will be to open a coffee trailer at our day center location, and we have acquired a donation center for accepting donations and eventually opening a thrift store.
Have a Blessed year, and may our Hope be in Jesus Christ,
Bridge Street Mission