I first started photographing for the San Diego Rescue Mission in 2003, at their Annual Thanksgiving Community Dinner. It has been a true honor to see up close, through the lens, the work that the Mission is doing for the homeless population in San Diego.
At this years Sleepless San Diego, the had a photo exhibit called “Face of Homelessness.”
Inside this tent were photos of the homeless in San Diego. Linda, who put the exhibit together asked if I would contribute some photos, since she heard I had been helping photograph at the Mission. I said it would be an honor and I gladly gave her a few photos to pick from. These are a few of the photos that they used…
This was taken in the morning before the Annual Thanksgiving Dinner. Groups go into downtown inviting the homeless to dinner…I was following a group that wandered down to Seaport Village Embarcadero Park.
I think this photo was taken at Easter Dinner. One of the great things the Mission does is after the dinner, they give everyone a “goodie” bag of essentials. They have 3 Community Dinners a year: Easter, Thanksgiving and Christmas. If you want to be blessed, volunteer for one of these events.
This was taken at a homeless outreach in Balboa Park. They meet on Saturday mornings for Church Without Walls. They invite the homeless to come, rest and attend church. Afterwards they feed them lunch, hand out Bibles and just talk with them.
The next 2 were also taken at Church Without Walls at Christmas time.
After the service, they gave out Christmas presents to everyone along with backpacks full of toiletries, socks and other assorted essential items. This young boy came with his dad, and I think he was blessed as much as the man receiving the present. It was certainly a humbling moment.
Come to me, all who labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you,and learn from me, for I am gentle and lowly in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light.
(Matthew 11:28-30 ESV)
I am truly thankful for the opportunity to share some of these photos. Hopefully, through these images folks can see that homelessness isn’t constrained by age or gender.
These volunteers were walking around Sleepless with these signs…1 in 4 homeless are young adults ages 18-30! The signs speak for themselves, even the ones upside down!
The SD Rescue Mission created this great video about 5 ways we can help the homeless. Please take a look
My first experience with Promise Keepers was at Anaheim Stadium in 1994 (seen here, before becoming a baseball only stadium).
It was an experience that I can still remember and it was when God really showed me the importance and the power of men who come together to pray and hold each other accountable. Since 1994 I think I have been to 4 other Promise Keeper events, either to attend or photograph.This past weekend Promise Keepers was back in San Diego at SDSU‘s Viejas Arena. The last time I was at there it was for the Rock Church Easter Service in 2007. It was fun to wander around underneath, hard to believe it was 5 years ago since I was last there.Volunteers getting their assignmentsIt was a blessing to help Promise Keepers document this year’s conference in San Diego. It was their last event for the year and it finished well. Promise Keepers might not be filling 60,000+ seat stadiums right now, but I was exciting to see what God was doing. They are trying to equip and encourage the men of the church. Young and old and everything in between! Calling them Out to be Men of God…in their marriages, families, churches, work places and communities. There is talk of Promise Keepers coming back through San Diego next year. If they do, I will be there! What a blessing!
Easter on the Ranch is a time for boys and girls who have incarcerated parents, along with their families, to enjoy a day away from their city life. The volunteers at the ranch provide for them a western experience that includes hayrides, horse rides and farm animals.
There are over 70,000 children ages 7-15 in the Southern California area that have incarcerated parents. The statistics show that these children are five times more likely to end up in prison themselves. They are seven times more likely to become involved in the juvenile justice system than their peers. And they are more likely to suffer from depression, substance abuse, disruptive behavior, eating and sleeping disorders, diminished academic performance, and feelings of abandonment, loneliness, shame, guilt, and resentment.
The kids get to color eggs and make Easter crafts. It is a time to have fun and hang out with their friends.
Calicinto Ranch does much more than just this once a year Easter celebration for these boys and girls, they also put on spring break and summer camps for them. Here the kids get to hear Bible stories and sing worship songs. They learn the six pillars of Character: Trustworthiness, Respect, Responsibility, Fairness, Caring and Citizenship. Calicinto Ranch gives children a life changing experience in order to break the cycles of at-risk youth of incarcerated parents.
To lean more about the Ranch go HERE
To see more photos from the day go HERE
I love these baby Chickens and with I could have brought them home from Oaxaca. I could not find out how they made them so colorful, but I am sure it would be illegal in the US. They would have made fun Easter gifts.The Catholic’s in Oaxaca seem to celebrate Christ’s Crucifixion more than His resurrection. They make and sell these figures of Jesus on the cross. It is sad for me to see the people worshiping Christ on the cross because they don’t seem to have the joy and hope that the Bible promises those who believe in the resurrection. Oaxaca is the second poorest state in Mexico with 57% of the children in rural areas experiencing stunted growth due to malnutrition. There are people living in houses with dirt floors, no running water and no indoor restrooms. Yet each village has a very big and elaborately decorated Church. This Easter as you attend your church, gather with family for a scrumptious meal and fill your Easter baskets, don’t forget the reason for the holiday and say a prayer for those less fortunate. “HE HAS RISEN, HE IS NOT HERE” Luke 24:6 See how Adventures in Life is helping the people of Oaxaca
For if, because of one man’s trespass, death reigned through that one man, much more will those who receive the abundance of grace and the free gift of righteousness reign in life through the one man Jesus Christ.
Therefore, as one trespass led to condemnation for all men, so one act of righteousness leads to justification and life for all men. For as by the one man’s disobedience the many were made sinners, so by the one man’s obedience the many will be made righteous. Now the law came in to increase the trespass, but where sin increased, grace abounded all the more, so that, as sin reigned in death, grace also might reign through righteousness leading to eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord.
(Romans 5:17-21 ESV)
Christ died (on Friday) and rose on the third day (Sunday) that we might have life! That’s the Good News!
If your looking for somewhere to go to church this Easter and your in San Diego, you can go HERE to see what the Rock Church is doing or in North County San Diego, you can go to Horizon North County’s site HERE.