Holy Apostles Soup Kitchen

Archive for May, 2015|Monthly archive page

The Ballet Dancer

In Uncategorized on May 29, 2015 at 4:58 pm

 

ballet-dancer1

Santegidio, a world wide charitable organization gave a picnic in Central Park and I was invited.  On my way to the picnic area we had to pass a Ballet dancer fully made up with a tutu. It’s like you are looking at a music box. I asked my friend to loan me a dollar so that I could put in the bucket. As I didn’t want to put in the nickels and dimes in the bucket, a man of my standard throwing in nickels and dimes…no,  no, no. So after she finished her dance she bowed then winked and blew me a kiss. Naturally my instinct did the same. This I started down the hill to the picnic area on the way I started to think what if that was a man under all that make up and dress I had blown a kiss to, Jesus Christ…I shudder and I dismissed that thought. It was a beautiful day, the sun was shining and we all had a good time even with the people I didn’t care about. The host of the picnic asked us to form a circle as she wants to thank us for coming and she wanted to tell us what this picnic was all about, “friendship”. Then she told us the pope had just visited their group in Italy and spoke about different people getting together holding hands. Black, white, Chinese, African getting together to be happy. Then my though went back to the ballet dancer and blowing a kiss. I was being stupid…In my other life I would have said “Phew”(Pee-You”). Santegidio is a group that is worldwide that helps people, whether you are homeless or not. I have been a part of this group several years and they are above board. They mean what they say. Their motto should be “We Will Give You a Helping Hand”.

-George Cousins

Seed/Embryo

In Poetry on May 26, 2015 at 7:16 pm

Sunflower_seedlings_large

1. It’s my opinion that through

our creator, that before

you’re a flower – a seed

is embedded in the warmth

of the earth, inner is

yet to be revealed from

this seed – outer beauty

is yet to behold –

Embryo – something as

yet undeveloped.

2. Yet, we as human – beings

possess beauty within

us  ready to blossom.

3. As we live and grow

our potential self

take form.

Inner beauty allows your

outer beauty to cause a

pleasing aroma of yourself.

4. It’s a joy to be polite.

The joy that lives within

me/you.

5. It does not depend

on outer situatioins

or people. Its factors

present in individuals

from birth-

6. To overlook the

treasures of your

inner beauty-

“not very cool”

7. Being focus – not on

what’s missing, but

on the inspiration of

your beauty in a

world of darkness/blight.

8. We’re paramount

on the universe we dwell

to have the ability to

discipline one self,

to manage –

9. After the blessings

that have been the

expressions of God’s

love, generosity and

favor, the gratidutde

of you/me might show

some harvest/blessings

expected – return –

10. We can enrich the

lives of others by

producing thanks

for our blessings

to others –

11. Challenge your blessings –

Indulge in your harvest –

12. Spring arrives with

honor and grace and

sunshine.

Flowers with smiles

of love.

13. Springtime – oh! yes!

Winter has gone

to bed for now! –

14. Words are special

in storytelling, it

matters, they have

meaning, not just

ink on paper –

15. “Hello Spring”

You have sprung –

the strength of our

actions – should match

our gratitude of

words!

A transformation –

Yes!

A warm smile –

A delight!

And exhiliration – where in

the mind and the heart

compliments each other –

to take a bow at this

moment!

-Fred D. Street

Saying Farewell to Sister Cecilia

In Uncategorized on May 21, 2015 at 7:02 pm

Sister Cecilia

We are celebrating the many years of volunteer service donated by Sister Cecilia Palange. Her dedication to bringing food for the soul to the noon day meal every Friday for 23 years will be very much missed as she moves on to her next phase in life.

“I started as a “bus girl” on the tables,” Sister Cecilia recalls. Bussing tables is an important job here at Holy Apostles Soup Kitchen, because on our 20 or so tables, as many as 1200 guests eat their mid-day meal in less than two hours.

“After several years, though,” she remembers,” there were too many volunteers so I set up my ‘soul food table’ in the corner.” At Sister Cecilia’s table, guests have had access to literature and “positive stuff to read”, such as Our Daily Bread publications and cards with motivational quotes on them. The real gift though has been her consistent availability for spiritually uplifting conversation.

For Sister Cecilia, being in the presence of guests at the soup kitchen has been a gift. “I remember one guest saying he had a toothache. Oh, it was terribly painful. But then he said, ‘A hurting heart hurts more’. That really stuck with me.” She goes on to recall a time she offered a card to a guest and suggested he put it on his wall. “I don’t have a wall,” he said. “I live under a bridge.”

I’m sure many of our guests and volunteers have fond memories of Sister Cecilia and wish her all the best in her journey bringing positivity to people’s souls.

Freedom of Expression

In Guest stories, Prose, Uncategorized on May 21, 2015 at 11:50 am

lady_liberty

Since I’m always on my way, going someplace, a better question is “Where are you coming from?’

T.S. Eliot started by by saying, “In my end is my beginning.” There is much work that I still have to do before I accept my end. I would work to make myself a useful citizen of this country. I have much to offer, and much of what I have to offer is in what I have to say.

It is not that I am full of myself. Yet I believe that many of the problems that America is facing are not unlike the personal problems I have. America might do well to lend me her ear to see how I have succeeded where I find her to be faltering.

It is not as though what I have to say has already been said by others. I am different from the people around me. Social workers try to deal with me by looking up the answer in the back of the book. They do not understand that their book is the wrong book. The right book has not yet been written.

Yes, I was born in New York City, on December 17,1942. It was ten days after Enrico Fermi’s achievement of controlled fission. It was Beethoven’s birthday. It was the middle of the World War. Music, science, and history are in my blood. Their fundamental precepts are the context in which I stand in this instant of time’s momentum. they are the horizon that surrounds me in everything I hope to do.

On the seashore I see what I can reach for: a land of acceptance and welcome. A journey that began when my parents left Europe is finding its place in America, just as America is finding her place in the world. My role is to add significance to what she does. We hear overtones, for music is international language.

In the end, we two have much left to say.

Walter Schubert

 

Spring Fever

In Poetry on May 15, 2015 at 9:55 am

 

Spring fever to me is a time of joy – sharing.

The feeling of the changing from

winter to spring – bringing

forth the flowers – budding of tree leaves –

birds singing

 

Spring fever is renewing of the spirit self –

it also heightens the feeling

of taking charge of your love for mankind

 

Spring fever – elevates the

feel of being outside with joy,

the changing of landscape – colors

everywhere – this is spring fever to me.

 

Fred Street

 

 

Soup Kitchen Story: Robert

In employment, Guest stories, Keeping hope alive on May 7, 2015 at 2:09 pm

Robert with border

Robert has been delivering important messages for a long time now, and we’re fortunate that his work has brought him back through the doors of Holy Apostles Soup Kitchen.  In the mid 1990’s Robert was a bike messenger in lower Manhattan and would “stop in pretty much every day for a hot meal” at Holy Apostles Soup Kitchen. By the year 2000 he had put in enough time –  “8 hours a day on a bike!” – to merit moving up to a job as an indoor messenger, working within an office mailroom setting.  Hard work has always been central to Robert’s life.

“My mother instilled a good work ethic in me,” he tells me. “You’ve got to put something into life in order to get something out of it!”

He was working hard and his employment steady when, in 2006, he was diagnosed with cancer. No longer able to work full time, Robert found himself without a job at all, his only focus on survival. That’s when he turned to Harlem United for support, which ultimately led to the part time job that brought him back to the steps of Holy Apostles Soup Kitchen, helping today’s guests.

Robert says Harlem United Services was originally set up to help only people living with HIV access the help they need, but it has expanded its range of services to people with differing physical and mental health needs.  His job is to get the message out about its day programs: from therapy to housing and health coordination.  “I had to think of places where I could tell a lot of people about Harlem United, and Holy Apostles Soup Kitchen was always in the back of my mind,” he says.

Harlem United is just one of many agencies we invite into the soup kitchen daily to offer guests a way to connect with others who can offer them additional help to address specific needs. Robert is here in this capacity twice a month and though we serve over 1,000 meals every day he says  he will be satisfied if he can reach “one person.”

“This place is an oasis in the middle of Manhattan,” Robert says, “People can eat all they want here, come back for seconds and anyone can use it. I know  it’s made a big impact on people.”

Room by Thomas Clarke

In memoir, Prose on May 1, 2015 at 3:03 pm

As I entered what used to be my old bedroom, I noticed the changes. The yellow walls were painted blue, and the once lush 70s style gold carpeting had been stripped out in favor of generic cheap hardwood flooring. The sloping ceiling was still present, but what used to be endlessly tall and sloping now felt suffocating. And what seemed to be a big room now felt claustrophobic. I never felt much at home in the years I lived in that house, but 5 years after I moved out and 3 months after my dying father sold the house to my aunt, she made enough changes to make a house that had been in the family for 38 years seem like another house that was fixed up and renovated for another quick sale.