Except for a Grinch here and there, the Holiday Season seems to bring the best out in most people. People tend to smile more, become a bit more caring about the welfare of strangers and generally show good will towards all.
Last week I shared a message from Pastor Charles Nieman, as well as photos from their annual Christmas distribution. This week I visited Ysleta Lutheran Mission Human Care for their annual Christmas giving event.
For the last thirty years, YLM has strived to meet the needs of those in their community who lack food, medical care, clothing and the necessities of life. On Saturday, they gave back on a much larger scale.
For weeks, both staff members and volunteers of YLM have been preparing to provide 500 food baskets and blankets, a minimum of 800 toys, as well as 600 coats.
Everything that was distributed Saturday, came from donations within the community, as well as Orphan Grain Train and Operation Noel who provided coats.
“It’s important,” said Pastor Karl Heimer, “that we help meet not only their spiritual needs but material needs as well. It gives them comfort and joy, a reason to be happy.”
Next year, YLM will be providing more toys, coats, blankets for both Thanksgiving and Christmas. But their giving is not limited to only those two days.
Each Saturday YLM provides food baskets for families who need help making ends meet. Registration is Saturday starting at 8:30 a.m. and distribution starts at 10 a.m. Also, on Saturdays, they host RotoCare.
RotoCare is a free medical clinic hosted by YLM, the Rotary Club of El Paso and staffed by doctors from Texas Tech. Then, Monday thru Friday, YLM provides a hot lunch to anyone in need. Lunch starts at 11:30 a.m. and ends when the food is gone.
For more information, you can call the church at 915-858- 2588. You can also visit them online.
NOTE: Steven Cottingham is a volunteer at Ysleta Lutheran Mission Human Care as well as host of their weekly radio show Changing Lives Through Simple Acts of Kindness