Recently there was a gathering at Humility of Mary Shelter (now Humility Homes and Services, Inc) to celebrate it's 10th Anniversary. Sister Johanna Rickl, CHM Vice President, joined with other Quad City representatives and spoke to the ways the Congregation of the Humility of Mary and the Quad City community stepped up ten years ago to make the leap of faith to take on the operations of the shelter and how we need to continue to work together to address the serious housing needs in the Quad Cities. One of the speakers was a man who has received services provided by Humility of Mary Shelter and currently lives there. He told his story through this poem which conveys how he could find joy even while homeless.
Homelessness can be a rough life
Over 20 years of my life;
But, in a different way, it can be a rewarding life too.
Getting one with God's nature.
Opening up your heart and eyes to surroundings of God's nature
and the beauty He put in front of us.
Whether it's rescuing a baby Wood Duck from the river
or sitting on a bench and watching a tree branch fly off.
Then I looked again,
it was a grey stork perched on the trash can by the tree.
Or walking along in the winter time,
seeing snow spiders dance in a circle on the frozen ground.
Or just sitting at the prayer table outside the shelter
and having talks with God.
Making yourself a Flintstones home
on the Mississippi River in Rock Island.
God provided everything, I just had to work hard.
They are probably still wondering
how I moved a 12-foot sidewalk down the hill.
Homelessness is a very hard life to live
But having a place to live Is even better.