A place to actually call “home”

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Today Erinn and I were asked to visit a friend in their apartment, to “bless it despite the mess”. It was a beautiful experience.

This friend has a wild sense of humour, is artistic and thoughtful, and has struggled with addiction for many years. He has lived in a variety of contexts, including shelters and prisons, and now has a bachelor apartment in Parkdale. He has been part of The Dale community for a long time.

He has spoken for a while about the need to clean up his place, and today he was insistent that we come by for a while; not to clean, but to pray. He told us how he has never really learned how to make a place into a home; how to house-keep in the most meaningful sense. He asked us to pray a blessing over his lodging place, in hopes that it will feel more like a home.

So we did. And in a couple of weeks we’ll return, with cleaning supplies, garbage bags, and a good supply of elbow grease. Both Erinn and I find cleaning to be a therapeutic activity, so we’re genuinely looking forward to the opportunity to help our friend spruce up his place. And we know that it is a deep honour to be able to help turn a house/apartment/room into a home.

There are so many reasons that a place may not feel like a home- a lack of cleanliness/organization, a lack of physical or emotional safety, geographical distance from communities of belonging, the presence of a variety of unwelcome critters, or the presence of unfriendly/hostile neighbours.

Our prayer is that the transformation from an apartment to a home will occur in a meaningful way for our friend, and for so many of our other friends who may not currently  be “houseless” but are still deeply “homeless”.

About joannacatherinemoon

I am the Lead Community Worker at The Dale Ministries in Parkdale, Toronto, ON. The Dale seeks to create safe welcoming spaces in which all people, particularly those on the margins, are encouraged to participate fully, to the best of their abilities and journey together toward a deeper experience of the life God has given us. This blog is meant to help keep my supporters connected with life at The Dale.

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