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A MESSAGE FROM PASTOR GARRY CUTHBERT

There is a story about a downtown soup kitchen, located in a church


basement, that was run by an order of the Jesuits. One day a young
seminary student came to the soup kitchen as a requirement for his
evangelism class. He spent the entire day helping an elderly Jesuit
provide assistance to the street people who lived around the church. It
was a particularly busy day and he was exhausted by the time the
kitchen was scheduled to close. He tidied up the kitchen and went to
the main door of the facility—relieved that he could finally lock it for
the evening. As he was closing the massive oak door, he glanced down
the deserted street to see a disheveled, homeless man racing down
the street trying to get to the soup kitchen before it closed. Under his
breath he uttered the expletive, “Jesus Christ…” Behind him the elderly
Jesuit commented, “Could be son, could be” (see Matthew 25:31-45).

I think this story reflects my “philosophy” of ministry. I firmly believe


that we as Christians have, through baptism, been ordained to
function as the “hands and feet” of our Lord and Master Jesus Christ.
We have been called to carry on the work that Jesus began 2,000
years ago.

Humanity has been offered an incredible gift, that of a restored


relationship with the loving Triune God. The very origin of the universe
loves each and every one of us so much so that he came to this earth
to live among us (Philippians 2). This loving God, continues to reach
down to us to invite us accept that gift. When we respond to this offer,
it allows us the freedom to share this same love with others.

Therefore the purpose of a congregation is not to be a closed group of


people separate from those outside the physical walls of some building
sporting a cross or a steeple. Instead, “church” is all about engaging
our neighbours and revealing to them the presentness of God’s
Kingdom in this needy world.
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In the gospel according to Saint Matthews, chapter 26, verse 11, Jesus
said: "… you always have the poor with you." If there is a text of
Scripture pregnant with unintended surplus of meaning, this is it.
"Surplus of meaning" refers to meaning generated by a text which
goes beyond the original intention of the text and often undermines it.
So, Mt.26.11 has been quoted to argue that Christians should not
waste time working for social and economic justice, or that social and
economic justice should not imply the elimination of poverty. It is
almost as if one needs to make sure that poverty is never eliminated
so that the words of the Gospel are not proven wrong -- a perverse
effort to make sure that it is a self-fulfilling prophecy -- as if the
credibility of Jesus would depend upon the perpetuation of poverty in
the world and might be undermined by its elimination.
Another assumption that colors much of the debate over poverty is a
certain work ethic that attributes prosperity to hard work and poverty
to laziness. This is the teaching found in the "Wisdom literature," for
example.1 Other texts are even more radical, attributing poverty to
God's punishment and wealth to God's blessing.2 A major
complication however, in researching Scriptures for insight on poverty,
is that often the poor is seen as the object of God's special favor and
poverty may be seen as a virtue while wealth is scorned as
wickedness.3 These various themes merge with each other, split from
one another and weave a complex web of meanings in the writings of
the prophets, the books of the law, the wisdom literature, in the
poetry and hymnody of the Hebrew Scriptures as well as in the
Gospels.
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ITEMS MOST NEEDED

`Tarps and tents


`Sleeping bags and blankets
`Heavy Coats, carharts, and rain ponchos
`Work, hiking, or winter boots
`Hoodies and sweatshirts
`Men’s and Women’s sweat pants and jeans
`Men’s underwear and insulated underwear and socks
`Women’s brief underwear and insulated underwear and socks
`Heavy gloves, hats, and snow pants
`Duct tape and bungee cords
`$5.00 gift cards to fast food restaurants(so they can
`legitimately sit in the establishment with a cup of coffee
and/or `food and warm up)
`Batteries
`Flashlights and lanterns
`Battery operated alarm clocks
`Food items-Vienna sausages, apples, oranges, snack packs of
`crackers with peanut butter or cheese, candy
`Personal items-Razors, soap, deodorant, tooth brushes and
`paste, lotions, lip balm, tissues, toilet paper, women’s body
`spray, combs and brushes.

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"Since we are a nonprofit ministry we appreciate and accept


any financial donations to help cover operating expenses"

We would like to thank all of that individuals that have comeforth and
especially the people who are on the board of directors and others that
have made personal financial donations to the Holy Spirit Ministries
Food Basket

Sincerely,

Pastor Garry Cuthbert


"Universal Life Church”
Holy Spirit Ministries Food Basket
203-1990 Whites Road,
Pickering, Ontario L1V 6P5
T:905 . 839 . 9031
Fax: 905 . 839 . 9031
E-mail:gcuthbert@rogers.com