Family Promise needed (past tense) temporary office space while searching for a permeant solution to meet their mission objectives. After having a conversation with the Council, Pine Shores extended an invitation to Tara M. Maffei, MSW, Director of Family Promise to use an office in our Administration building. As of tomorrow, the office of Family Promise will be located in the space across the hall from the Council room. Yes, it took a bit of cleaning, understanding and some creative thinking about where to shift medical equipment, backpacking bins, PW clothes closet items and a variety of “other stored treasures.” But thankfully we have the space to move things around.  As the office prepares to greet Tara, I thought back to when Alan and Chris Fyfe first talked to us about a ministry they were active in their church “back north.”  If my memory serves me right, it was called National Interfaith Hospitality Network. But before long the name changed to Family Promise. According to Tara, Family Promise of Sarasota was welcomed as an officially affiliate in 2008.  Pine Shores was one of the originating congregations and Alan and Chris Fyfe were the movers and shakers.  I don’t think they ever accepted no for an answer.  There are plenty of reasons a “no” answer was and still is unacceptable.  Currently, there are over 1,200 school-aged children in Sarasota County who are documented as “homeless.”  The mission at Family Promise of Sarasota is to help children experiencing homelessness and their families find sustainable, independent housing while providing temporary safe shelter, help with job searching, and counseling. That’s why we say “Yes!”  If you are interested in learning more about Family Promise, let us know and we’ll get you in touch with someone associated with them.
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Scripture Reading: Matthew 25:38
“And when was it that we saw you a stranger and welcomed you,
or naked and gave you clothing?”

Reflection Questions:
What do you know about Family Promise?
Why is homeless a problem?
What ministry or mission are you active in?

Prayer: Holy God, invite me to see and then engage in kingdom building by welcoming others and extending hospitality to those in need.  You bless me for a purpose. Amen.