The quarterly newsletter for Assumption BVM Church

September, 2019 | Archived Parish Happenings

Family Promise of Lower Bucks at Assumption BVM

“Christ is the reason for this school” was demonstrated in a new, profound way this summer as Assumption BVM became the first Catholic “host congregation” for Family Promise of Lower Bucks (www.fplb.org). For one week in May, June, July, and August, the former library, faculty room, and nurse’s office were used to shelter and feed homeless families. These carefully screened guests arrived around 6 pm each evening, slept overnight on cots provided by FPLB, and departed early the following morning for the Day Center where they showered, did laundry, took care of their children, went to school or jobs, met with counselors, and worked on goals like finding housing and employment.

Although the journey to ABVM becoming a host took almost 2 years, parishioners responded with overwhelming generosity and compassion. They provided delicious meals each evening, sheets and blankets for the cots, supplies such as paper plates, money to purchase items, prayers, and their time. Whether offering fellowship to the adult guests through conversation or to the children by playing games, putting together puzzles, or reading books, our volunteers modeled the love of Christ. “Unseen” volunteers also did things like launder sheets, vacuum, clean the bathrooms, set up the cots, and donate needed items, with no expectation of earthly recognition—while ABVM staff provided an incredible amount of support to the guests and to our team of Volunteer Coordinators: Pat Basgil, Lori and Matt Hastings, Rose Jacobs, and Chris Moser.

An unanticipated positive outcome was how this activity–designed to help strangers–ended up helping Assumption. It grew our church family closer by enabling parishioners to become acquainted with other parishioners. In addition, because FPLB volunteers who spent time directly with the children completed the Archdiocesan-mandated clearances, ABVM has an increased number of people now able to assist with other parish activities.

With the end of summer, the building returned to its role as a “school” for our PREP students. But all year long Family Promise needs volunteers at its Day Center and at other congregations. If you are inspired to learn how you can help–when ABVM hosts again in 2020 or sooner—or to be added to the ABVM Family Promise informational email list contact Rose Jacobs, r1jacobs@verizon.net, 215-364-8131. All volunteers and interested parishioners are invited to join us in giving thanks for all the blessings we received at the 5 pm Mass on Saturday, November 23.

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