Five Favs, works of mercy

Works of Mercy Bouquet: Shelter the Homeless

The statistics on homelessness is staggering–while it is hard to get an accurate number, all told it is in the millions just in the United States.  Sadly, the fasting growing population of homeless is children.  Here are five ways that you and your family can help in five really quick bites.

1
Support Habitat for Humanity.  It is an incredible organization, changing the lives of homeless people and families, one simple house at a time.  In high school, I did a lot of fundraising and publicity for Habitat for Humanity.  At that point, it was not as well known as today.  I have never gotten to actually work on a Habitat house, but I think I am going to try to find a project near by that Buddy and I can support with a little elbow grease.  He loves to build and I miss getting to, wood shop was my favorite class in middle school. Even if you can’t swing a hammer, you can help out and save money at the same time.  Check out one of their Re-Store thrift shops selling all kind of household goods and building supplies. We have one about an hour away that I plan on visiting for our next home improvement project.
2
 Want to help those in your community and in the most need but don’t know how to find them?  Check out this database of homeless shelters and call to find out their greatest need.  
3
Not all of the homeless are sleeping on the streets of the nearest city–millions live in orphanages, longing for a forever home.  I have always wanted to adopt and pray that some day I will get the opportunity.  Whether you are in the position to welcome another child into your home or not, you can help by supporting organizations like Show Hope.  Founded by Steven Curtis Chapman and his wife, Mary Beth, Show Hope works to assist families in adopting children from over sea and domestically.  Through financial and emotional support, it is changing lives.  Show Hope also runs Maria’s Big House of Hope, named for the Chapman’s daughter who was tragically killed at the age of five.  Maria’s Big House of Hope offers medical care to waiting orphans in China, including life saving surgeries that they would otherwise not receive.  I cannot say enough about this organization.  When international adoption rates dropped recently, Show Hope began domestic adoption assistant programs in all the home countries they service.  This provides a waiting child with a loving family, and waiting parents with the family they desire.  Simply remarkable!
4
Orphans in China and Nigeria are not the only children waiting for a home.  Some children need temporary homes to love them through difficult times.  The foster care system in America is bursting at the seams.  While, we boast that there are no orphanages in America, we have thousands upon thousands children in group homes or being shuttled between temporary houses for years.  If you are willing and able, the need is great.  To find out more about how you can help, check out Cry of the Orphan to learn about fostering, adopting, and other means of support.
5
   Lastly, try to bring the wayward Catholics home.  So many have fallen away or just stopped coming to Mass.  Reach out to those that you know and encourage them to rediscover their faith.  Evangelization must start with those who have already been catechized, even if it was poorly, to rebuild our Catholic communities. Pray for the conversion of your loved ones, your neighbors, our country at large, and especially our enemies.  God wishes that none should perish, help to lead as many as you can to their eternal home.

Linking up with Jenna at Call Her Happy.

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