When many of us think back on our fondest Christmas memories, we think of waking up early on Christmas morning in a warm house, surrounded by family. We think of family traditions, homecooked meals, giving and receiving gifts, and, most importantly, the birth of our Savior Jesus Christ.
Although our Christmas celebrations are all unique in their own way, many vulnerable neighbors won’t get to wake up in a warm home with their loved ones, to eat a hot meal or to be able to give or receive gifts on Christmas Day.
That’s why we want to do our part to make this Christmas, and every Christmas, one that anyone who comes to Denver Rescue Mission for help can look back on with fond memories.
Bless Our Brothers
Bless Our Brothers is the Mission’s annual Christmas event for participants in the New Life Program, a long-term rehabilitation program that helps men gain the skills, stability, spiritual support, and self-esteem necessary to become productive, self-sufficient citizens.
This year we gathered at the DoubleTree by Hilton with Mission staff and volunteers from Sports Radio 104.3 The Fan to serve 90 men in the program. Before the event we asked each person to create a wish list of three items they wanted which they then received in a beautifully wrapped giftbox or giftbag.
Thanks to our supporter, Red Canary, the men also received a stocking filled with fleece gloves, snacks, activity books, and toothbrush kits. They were also able to pick out a hat, gloves or socks thanks to Zelda & Friends and Parker Evangelical Presbyterian Church.
The night was filled with live music from New Life Program participants who sang and played wonderfully. A tasty meal of roasted chicken breast, roast beef, green beans, Yukon gold smashed potatoes, salad, and rolls was enjoyed by all. Desserts included yule logs, pie, Christmas cookies, and festively decorated cakes.
We deeply appreciate our generous community for supporting us as we came together to do something special for the men who are working hard to transform their lives!
The Christmas celebration continued at three of our shelter facilities—Lawrence Street Community Center, 48th Avenue Center and Fort Collins Rescue Mission—where our hardworking staff and volunteers came together to create a special holiday experience for our vulnerable neighbors.
Patricia, who has been homeless for about a year, is thankful to the Mission for giving her a sense of home when she has been without one.
“When I come to Denver Rescue Mission, I walk through the door and I say, ‘I’m home.’ My family doesn’t know I’m homeless because I wanted to do this all on my own, but the staff is welcoming and treats everybody respectfully—they are my family.”Patricia, Lawrence Street Community Center guest
We served a meal of ham, turkey, mashed potatoes, corn, pie, cookies, and more, all with the hope that it could be the homecooked Christmas meal that many of our guests may not have been expecting to get this year. In total, we served 329 Christmas meals at the Lawrence Street Community Center, and an additional 398 meals at the 48th Avenue Center.
As 2021 comes to a close and we look toward 2022, we are astonished by the abounding support from our community. You never cease to amaze us, and thanks to you, individuals and families in need can now have fond Christmas memories to look back on.
Written by: Linneya Gardner, Content Specialist