Holy Apostles Soup Kitchen

Archive for April, 2014|Monthly archive page

John’s Story

In Guest stories, Soup Kitchen Stories on April 29, 2014 at 7:06 pm

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John never imagined that he would become homeless but after a string of expensive medical bills and difficulty finding work, he was evicted from his home. Newly homeless, John didn’t know where to turn.

“It’s challenging to navigate the system when you aren’t familiar with it,” John says. “But Holy Apostles is very inviting. Everyone is so welcoming.”

John has been coming here for two weeks since he became homeless and plans to continue coming until he finds work. “It’s a heaven of soup kitchens. I love the environment. It’s an unbelievable church architecturally, and the grand piano music is spectacular,” John shares.

John is also using our counseling services to get referrals, and for help figuring out his options. But meanwhile, he says, “This is a good place. I’m grateful that I have somewhere pleasant to go and good food to eat. They serve gourmet level food here, and a good amount too. I feel like I’m coming to a restaurant, not a soup kitchen,” John says.

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The Best Passover I Ever Had

In Stories, secrets & dreams on April 7, 2014 at 5:04 pm

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The best Passover I ever had – at least, one of the more memorable ones – I had dinner with a priest in a Chinese restaurant in Rome on the first night of Passover.

About 15 years ago I spend a month there, alone and having no Italian to speak of. I knew how to say grazie and prego and that plus my joy and delirium at having total freedom to wander around when and where I pleased – not having to worry about displeasing anyone. I knew a few American expatriates from previous visits so my evenings were not too dismal- and so back to the first night of Passover, when I found myself having dinner with a charming missionary priest from Boston attached to the Vatican. I had met him on one of the Capitoline Hill sin Rome, where not too many tourists wander. It was the end of March or the early part of April, and between the bird sounds around me and the wind in the cyprus trees – I put my legs up on the bench I was sitting on and with a perfect sense of serenity just dozed off. I awoke with a start and there was Father Joe, standing to my left, watching me with a totally benign smile on his face. I was not only startled but embarrassed – I, an American lady of a certain age in an expensive genuine Burberry, stretched out like a teenage hippie.

“Oh, I’m so sorry,” I said and sat up

“Why?” he said. “What a blissful way to sleep, on such a perfect day”

He sat down beside me and we talked and talked, mostly about Ancient Rome, and some personal things. For the rest of my stay we met regularly – my savior who kept me from being alone on Passover. (I must admit I ordered the mu shu pork). I tried to contact him on my next trip bit I was told he was at a mission in Africa. I spent Easter – Roman Catholics’ great day 0 among the Romans – and that was certainly the best Easter I’ve ever spent.

by Betty Nicholson

 

Easter

In Stories, secrets & dreams on April 6, 2014 at 7:10 pm

Easter

The best Easter I ever had was when I was young. My mother was catholic so when it was Palm Sunday we would go to church and get palms. When it was Good Friday we wouldn’t eat meat because that’s what you’re supposed to do.

On Easter my mother would cook a big dinner. She would watch “The Ten Commandments” and give my sister and I money to go out if we wanted to. I used to stay home with her, but I stopped when I got to be 11. I used to have my friend Malikha come over and spend the night over at my house. On Easter we would go to the movies together, then go to my house and eat the food my mother cooked and watch “The Ten Commandments.”

By Thyatira English

Two Thoughts

In Prose on April 6, 2014 at 5:11 pm

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Two Thoughts

This brick
this block
this slab of ice
appeals
to me in summer heat
Not now
when it must compete
with other cold
within and
without
me

One siren
for my hurt
and its relief
not quick enough
to salvage
pieces of myself
I tossed
unwisely
not knowing
I might need them later

by Annie Quintano

Forget the Past

In Keeping hope alive on April 3, 2014 at 5:02 pm

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Forget the Past, Part 2

In this world, I am getting older. I don’t have my own family to cheer me through. Soon I have to be looking for an apartment to live in. Good help is hard to find. Just a few friends. I am just wondering if one of my friends is going to be my roommate. I told him that I have packed some of my things into boxes, not to wait until the last minute. I am not sure where my next apartment will be. It is a scary feeling to have on my shoulder, to carry on. Time I don’t have, just hope for the future. I hope that this friend of mine understands my problem. I couldn’t do this on my own – to duck my past-history problems. I am not sure what that’s about. Just survive.

I always have things to say that no one hears. Frustrated – yes, I am. Not sure that getting old is a wise things. To have it – to use it, that’s a different story. To duck from the trouble of people that much I did. To use wisely. I am not sure how to use it. Just feeling. All my life I always ducked from the problem people. I hope my new place is newborn of my problem of life.

I also hope I made peace with my own troubles sometimes. In the past a picture frame fell on my nose. It is too late to duck.

Each day I live, I am alive and ticking. To duck if there is a fire or smoke, I have never had that experience, to save someone. I am not sure where to start, but I always go there. To get help is not easy for me. Someone is out there to attack you. The alone thing for me always said, “Duck! And run for your life. Go forward, don’t look back on your own history!”

 by Leucio Parrella

Wilfred’s Story

In Guest stories, Soup Kitchen Stories on April 2, 2014 at 7:06 pm

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Wilfred first came here 15 years ago, and while his life has changed immensely in the past 15 years, he continues to come back. “I was surprised by how many people come here, yet I still felt welcome. And the food is good – there’s a lot of variety,” Wilfred shares.

Wilfred is now living in a section 8 apartment in midtown, and is grateful to have his own place.

“Holy Apostles has been here for me throughout the years. I was homeless for many years, and Holy Apostles got me off the street,” Wilfred says.

Not only has Wilfred’s housing situation changed for the better but he’s also found work, as an usher at a movie theater. “I like my job. I get to see a lot of movies free when I get out of work,” Wilfred says excitedly.

Despite finding employment, Wilfred continues to come to Holy Apostles. “I look forward to the days I’m off work and can come eat at Holy Apostles. I don’t just come for the food. I come here for the comfort,” he says. “Holy Apostles is my spiritual food and my physical food, it’s a package deal. Coming here keeps my spirits up when I’m down. Holy Apostles has been a great help in my life.”