Last week, we had the great pleasure at St John’s Upper Norwood of delivering 80 hampers to Evolve Housing on Sylvan Hill, who we have had a relationship with for a number of years. Evolve Housing not only provides a home but also a range of support services to 80 homeless young people aged 16 – 25.
Jacqui, who worships in the congregation at St John’s, also works with Barings Bank. Jacqui suggested that as Baring are seeking opportunities to work with partners in the community to make good things happen, they should look to support the outreach work we do as a community in SE19. So, 100 food hampers were delivered at 8am on Tuesday last week, which would be for those who attend the HIVE and also those who live at Evolve Housing on Sylvan Road.
It’s nice being generous with other people’s kindness and this is exactly what happened on Wednesday last week. A banking organisation’s generosity affirmed the Church in Upper Norwood’s aspiration to find ways to serve and support our local community. On this occasion it was food hampers. Next week… who knows? Well, God does know and we pray that God will bless and encourage this new relationship with Barings through Jacqui and that we will be able to facilitate more generosity towards those who struggle to make ends meet and who come to St John’s and live nearby.
Symbolically there was something very profound in that, three of us, Mthr Shavaun, Fr Andrew and our Churchwarden, Rebecca Hall were delivering these hampers.
They embraced the pursuit by going over the bridge into Evolve with hampers in their arms or a trolley full. It was not hard for the passers-by on Sylvan hill to see our human chain of passing the hampers across this bridge as there were six of us in total. “A witness to God’s mission in the 21st century”, was Mthr Shavaun’s words when we finished. It was a joyful moment for us all.