We frequently forget just how lucky we are. It`s an enduring as opposed to endearing human trait. The appalling natural and human catastrophe in Japan, and and also earlier in the year in Christchurch, New Zealand, bring home all too clearly the thin line-between joy and sadness, certainty and despair. We have all, I`m sure, been moved not only by the suffering but also by the sheer heroism of so many, in the face of such terrible adversity. They put most of our own daily travails to shame.
Closer to base we can perhaps sometimes be guilty of a similar loss of perspective about our lot, when faced, for example, with the dilemma of the homeless. Try as we might, maybe , just maybe, we sometimes catgorize this group as being 'their own worst enemy'; drink, drugs, temperament, laziness-surely they`re the reasons behind the predicament in which they find themselves ?
The bottom-line of course is that this group are really not that different to ourselves. Each individual has particular reasons for his or her misfortune, and it`s not hard to imagine that had such issues been presented to us we too may have struggled; lucky for us therefore that we`ve our coping mechanisms and good people around us to help.
There are many fine individual`s organisations and charities that work tirelessly to help this group, for example Shelter and Crisis. On our own patch, the Maggs Day Centre in Worcester, established in some `spare capacity`owned by the Cathedral, does an absolutely outstanding job, clothing, feeding, counselling and being a `friend` to the homeless in the county. They also provide an overnight refuge throughout the cold winter nights. Established in memory of John Maggs, a homeless man found dead in the city in 1984, they do their very best to support the homeless in as many practical ways as possible.
Such centres exist in many other parts of the UK, and they all need our support. New Meeting has adopted the Maggs Centre this year for its charity; we shall do what we can in our own small way . We don`t pretend it will be anywhere near enough, and there will of course always be competing and very genuine other causes to support. Helping some of the most dispossessed on our very doorstep though, seems the least we should be doing. And how lucky are we to be in a position to do this !
For more info : Maggs Day Centre www.maggsdaycentre.co.uk