Cherishing the divine within all
Being home in America is a change after my African journey, but my sense of adventure is as active as ever. Last weekend I traveled to Baltimore, MD with the Messiah College Agape Center. We served with Catholic Charities, an organization that provides services to people with disabilities, the elderly, and those suffering from homelessness and hunger. We stayed in the Project Serve house, living with recent college graduates taking a year to serve in Baltimore.
Most of our service involved volunteering at soup kitchens. The Weinberg Housing and Resource Center offers a myriad of services from meals to employment skills courses, with the goal of helping participants attain permanent housing. My Sister’s Place shares a similar goal, but focuses primarily on women suffering homelessness. The biggest place we visited was Our Daily Bread, which has served a meal every day without fail since 1981. Its success has even been celebrated by Pope John Paul II.
In addition to service, I also got to experience the lovely city of Baltimore. The Project Serve house is located right next to the Enoch Pratt Free Library and Maryland State Library for the Blind and Physically Handicapped. Both are wonderful libraries that deserve a thorough walk through. The Enoch Pratt Free Library even has a giant chess set. My friends and I enjoyed a lovely dinner at Tabor Ethiopian Restaurant. If you enjoy injera, coffee ceremonies, and eating with your hands, it’s worth a check out. One of my favorite places in Baltimore is the Basilica, America’s First Cathedral. It’s a gorgeous building with a beautiful history, visited by Pope John Paul II and Saint Teresa of Calcutta.
If you live near the Baltimore area, I recommend volunteering for Our Daily Bread. They rely heavily on volunteers and donations. My favorite part of Catholic Charities is their motto: Cherishing the diving with all. They serve guests in a manner that respects the dignity of each individual person. I hope to carry this motto with me long after I leave the city.