By Joi Thomas, Special to the AFRO
Life can be very challenging. At any moment, your circumstances can change, and you may find yourself in need of assistance. For many persons in our city, this is their current reality. Assistance is needed for food, shelter, income, etc. Many churches in the city have done their part to help persons in one of these areas. Christian Life Church, under the leadership of Dr. Hugh Bair, Sr. is one such church. One of the tenets of their vision is “We are a lighthouse, penetrating the darkness.” They have chosen to shine their light by identifying the crucial role transitional housing plays in helping people get back on their feet and have decided to partner with three transition homes in the community – Dayspring Program Inc, Helping Up Mission, and My Sister’s Place Lodge.
Min. Joshua Bair, Youth Pastor at Christian Life Church says that this partnership will be most beneficial to both parties. “We realized the need for more community and church involvement with transitional homes. A lot of resources and focus is placed on the homeless and people struggling to keep their homes, but nothing for the people transitioning in between. Our pastor, Dr. Hugh Bair, Sr., empowered my team and I to go forward with this vision and the church body has backed us up. We draw from Hebrews 13:16: ‘Do not neglect to do good and to share what you have, for such sacrifices are pleasing to God. It is our desire to please God and carry out his mandates for those who are in need.’”
Dayspring Program, Inc. operates a transitional housing program for 18 families in east Baltimore. Helping Up Mission provides hope to people experiencing homelessness, poverty or addiction by meeting their physical, psychological, social and spiritual needs. My Sister’s Place Lodge is a transitional housing program for homeless women of Baltimore City who have been diagnosed with a disability. Christian Life Church seeks to be a blessing to the persons in these transitional homes. Min. Joshua Bair states “I pray they get the tools and resources they need in order to take their life back. Something as small as a hair brush or fresh bed sheets could be the catalyst for positive change in a person’s life. Also, I want them to know that there’s a church that believes and cares for them!”
Christian Life Church members get excited about helping others. This marks their second year of partnering with transitional homes. Min. Bair shared that the church uses the beginning of football season to mark the beginning of their giving season. “As the Raven’s kick off their season, we kick off our season of giving back! On our kick off Sunday, we wear Raven’s gear. Prior to, we contact the homes to see what they are most in need of and we include the needs in our announcement. We also appeal to congregants by having a representative from each home speak before the church. Donations are laid at the altar, and we look forward to seeing the alter filled with supplies! We also solicit volunteers to drop off the supplies when the drive is over and to pray with residents.”
Currently the church is collecting toiletries, bed sheets, baby supplies and any other much needed products that help persons live comfortably while in transition homes and even as they transition out of the homes. More help is always welcome. If you would like to partner with Christian Life Church and be a blessing to those in need, call the church office, 410-298-LIFE or email [email protected].