Karen's

Snapshots of Thanks

1.   Delish (I'm told!) vending machine cake is the right birthday treat for one of our street friends.   2.   My coworker, Nicole and me smiling under our Light Patrol masks as we make our way through the pouring rain to the hotel to meet youth who are coming to our art night   3.   A thanksgiving game of bananagrams.   4   Our little thankful tree where youth could write what they were thankful for on a leaf and add it to a branch.
New Things!
Thank you all so much for praying for the new opportunity we have been working on at the overflow shelter (aka. the hotel).   Open doors are a blessing at the best of times, but open doors during our current pandemic moment?   Only God.

We started by meeting youth and taking a survey of how we could come alongside them while they were in this space.   We had capacity to do  follow up one-to-one work once they were housed, but  during their time in shelter, we decided that we would offer some programming to get them out of their hotel rooms and experiencing some community.   Think of it as youth group for street involved youth!   So far we've hosted a board game night, arts cafe, sport and pizza in the park, and this week, a Thanksgiving feast.

We've had the chance to develop relationships with 2 youth who have moved into their own housing already, and our programs have  consistently been bringing out a small group of youth.   Our Thanksgiving Feast this week was attended by some youth who really needed to be there and by the end of the night we had  divine appointments with 3 specific individuals.    
 
I've got to shout out to First Baptist Church downtown.   This church came into partnership with Light Patrol about 1 year ago, when only God knew what was ahead for all of us.   FBC is located about a 5 minute walk from the hotel we are connecting with and is where we've been hosting all of our indoor small group gatherings. Generous with their space, loving to all who the Lord brings across their path, their light shines brightly in the darkness.   You've got to read about their amazing journey of courage: as literally the first baptist church in Toronto, as well as the oldest black institution in the city.
Check them out here!
Fundraising has posed a huge challenge for so many worthy ministries and non-profits out there.   City-Wide Listening Circles is how Youth Unlimited has "pivoted" (sick of that term yet?) in order to meet this year's challenge.  
A little bit about these "listening circles":
 
Over the course of two weeks (Oct. 22-Nov.5), you will choose your own adventure as you:
  • Hear from and engage in conversation with sector experts, community members, and our YU team
  • Hear stories of young, changed lives transformed by God's love and power
  • Learn how you can support and address the vital needs of our young people and city today
  • Partner with YU in its strategic response to these Listening Circles
Some of the interesting topics you may want to check out:
  • "The Local Church as a Force For Good in the CIty"
  • "Living out Truth and Reconciliation in the City"
  • "Mental Health: A Foundation for Flourishing"
  • "Climate Action: Stepping up to a Generational Challenge"
  • "Rethinking Charity: Business for Good"
  • and so many more!
2 things to note:  
1.   I will be sharing at the "Understanding Youth homelessness" circle October 28th!
2.   I have a magical discount code to share with you partners!   LSTN50 is 50% off your registration!

We believe this will be a can't miss; experience and hope you will join us!
 
Register Now
How you can be Praying:
  • Pray for the spiritual conversations we had this past Thursday:   For L, who is going to be entering into a bible study with my coworker, NIck.   He's expressed interest in baptism!   For A, who I had the privilege of praying for as she talked about wanting to make changes in her life but not quite understanding what she's working towards or what her purpose is. For P, who is new to Canada from Uganda and finds herself living in a shelter  but who expressed to Nicole that she would like to find  a church!  
  • Pray for the staff of these overflow shelters, that they would continue to hold the doors open for us as they see we are trustworthy.   Pray for the Holy Spirit to bring his peace upon these places.  
  • PRAISE:   We've been able to find several of our youth who had been lost to us!   Pray for deepening relationships with these young  people.



Friends...
Thanks for following along and joining in prayer for these needs, as well as for your financial support and encouragement!   Send me an email or message if you'd like to get together to talk more in depth.  
Love and Peace
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