The Skyline church was blessed Monday night with our first time to host the homeless in the community in the Room in the Inn program. Churches across Jackson are taking turns housing and feeding the homeless in our facilities. Estimates are that there are up to 800 homeless people in and around Jackson (by the way, a recent article suggests that the number of chronically homeless people dropped by 12% from 2005 to 2006 — that is welcome news).
This program is just getting started in Jackson, however, it has been active in other places like Nashville for many years. Our weather was unusual on Monday afternoon with temperatures nearing 80 degrees. This may have kept down the number of people who requested housing that night. We welcomed 4 men into our building for our first night of Room in the Inn.
Our van picked up the group at the Area Relief Ministries office at around 5 PM. When they arrived at our Christian Activity Center they were able to relax for a while before having a delicious meal. After dinner a number of Skyline families enjoyed playing cards, picking and singing, and conversation with our guests. After they had an opportunity to shower, they watched a couple of episodes of The Andy Griffith Show before lights out just after 10 pm.
The next morning a light breakfast was served and the guys were transported back downtown or to a near-by work place so they could begin their workday.
I am so thankful for Sam and Jimmie and Linda for leading this program, for all those who helped out (and those signed up for future weeks), and especially for Mike, Jeff, and Chris who spent the entire night in the CAC on Monday night.
Now that we have our feet wet, we can begin looking forward to our next night to host the group — November 19.