Posted on December 4, 2018
For people struggling with homelessness and poverty, finding peace and goodwill, even at Christmas time, can sometimes seem impossible.
The last few years, Mark Goetz has had a lot to deal with. He was let go from his job as a point-of-sales system supervisor, without cause, in 2015. Although he doesn’t know for sure, Mark suspects he was fired because the stress of trying to help his adult son to get free from addiction was affecting his work. “I was just trying to help my son, who was addicted to crystal meth at the time,” shares Mark, who has never used street drugs himself. But after losing his job, things quickly unraveled – he could no longer afford rent on his apartment, and his son moved to a different area of the Fraser Valley for support.
Mark was now alone – without a job or a home. He soon found himself living in a tent, pitched deep within a Surrey forest. It was then that Mark first came to NightShift Street Ministries. “I was unable to buy food. I remembered seeing NightShift online and decided to check it out,” he says. What Mark found when he got there, was a hot meal, and a group of people who offered him kindness and compassionate connection. It was huge relief, and it brought Mark a sense of peace, knowing he was not alone in life. “I started coming every night for dinner, and I am always treated with respect,” Mark says. “When you’re homeless and living in a tent, you don’t have a lot of friends. The people at NightShift have genuine concern for your well-being.”
Mark is now preparing to move into his own apartment. While he feels some anxiety over being able to make ends meet, he knows at NightShift, he can find nightly meals, and a community of people who love and care for him, unconditionally.
Mark came to NightShift for hot soup, but he found something more – a caring community, and the peace of knowing that he is not alone in the world. With your help, NightShift Street Ministries can continue reaching out, to people like Mark, 365 nights a year, with a hot meal, safe community and prayer, along with weekly drop in programs, basic clothing and emergency nursing.