Called Out of Darkness to Serve Others with Love

VeronicaVeronica arrived at Atlanta Mission two years ago, needing hope and a fresh start for her family. She shared her story of transformation with us last year.  She now wanted to share an update about all that God is doing in her life. 

After graduating from Atlanta Mission’s My Sister’s House one year ago, staff members challenged Veronica to take part in a year-long ministry training program at My Sister’s House. Though initially resistant, Veronica prayed, and God led her to take part in the training. She is so thankful that He did.

“The ministry program has really transformed me to give me a heart to serve.” 

As part of the program, Veronica worked in the kitchen at The Atlanta Day Shelter for Women and Children, where she learned humility and how to surrender control to God. This work also gave her a heart to serve those on the fringes of society and set the stage for what God was calling her to next.

“I can see a change in me as a professional and as a Christian.”

 

Veronica worked as a nurse for over 30 years prior to coming to Atlanta Mission. She did not expect to have an opportunity to return to her skilled profession. However, our God is a God of the unexpected and He placed her in a position as a Registered Nurse in the busy trauma center of a local Atlanta hospital. 

Her time in the ministry training program provided her with the tools to face life and death situations on a daily basis with compassion and peace. She learned to talk with God daily, moment to moment even. “I know God is the final author of every story and that He’s in control in the lives of my patients.” 

When asked about how she approaches nursing differently now, Veronica shares, “Previously, I felt like I was out there chasing money. I was very dissatisfied…Now, I’m at peace. I have a desire to really serve the people I work with. It is no longer a financial means for me. It is now a calling.”

During her free time, Veronica is working towards launching “Serve a Soul Save a Soul Ministry”. While at My Sister’s House, God gave Veronica a vision to join her culinary degree with her passion for people, to serve meals to those still living on the streets of Atlanta. “Not only do I want to nourish their bodies, but also, feed their souls.”

Looking to the future, Veronica wants to continue to serve those living in difficult circumstances. Whether bringing friendship and meals cooked with love to those in need or sitting at the bedside of a frightened patient, she believes that we need to meet people where they are and to fulfill God’s calling to love and serve.

And, maybe they will also find hope and a fresh start through Veronica’s transformed life and her love…

Wednesday Wins

Happy Wednesday! We have so many exciting things going on at Atlanta Mission this week. Here are some of the highlights:

  • Every Friday, including this coming up Friday, we have a group from Northwest Exterminating that comes and reads to our kids. This is a special time for our kids because this group has been coming consistently for a year and have been able to build relationships with our staff and our kids.
  • Johnson Ferry Baptist Church will be hosting another movie night with the men on Saturday.
  • Our Food Service Director, Pat Walker graduated with her associates degree in hospitality, and not only did she graduate, she graduated with honors.
  • Another special highlight for us is that two of our employees who are celebrating their one year work anniversary at Atlanta Mission were former clients. We love to see how God transforms their lives here and calls them to serve here.

Thats it for this week! We wish each of you could step through the doors of our shelters and experience the transforming power of Christ that happens every day in our friends who stay with us, our staff, and our partners.

Mother’s Day!

It’s Mother’s Day and at Atlanta Mission Mother’s Day is special for us. For some of the women living with us this may be the first time they have spent a Mother’s Day sober. For some it’s the first Mother’s Day they have spent it with their kids, and for others who aren’t mothers, it’s the first time they have reconnected with their mother.

We love celebrating the women who live in our shelters for their bravery to do the hard thing and change their lives for the better, today we say Happy Mother’s Day!

A couple of months ago we took these photos of one of our moms who just had this sweet little one…enjoy!

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Denise’s Story

Today Denise – one of our Ambassadors is sharing about her journey at Atlanta Mission. Denise has been crucial in building relationships with the ladies at our Day Shelter. 

Blessed Assurance is one of those songs that will never grow old because it has such depth. Some of the lyrics go like this:

Blessed assurance, Jesus is mine! Oh what a foretaste of glory divine!

Heir of salvation purchase of God, Born of His Spirit washed in His Blood.

This is my story this is my song, praising my savior all the daylong.

I never truly and fully knew what worshiping Christ was like till the day I could sing this song during a worship time next to someone who to the world had nothing, but to them, they had everything in Christ.

Two years is how long I’ve worked at the mission. That’s 17,520 hours, give or take. I’ve had the privilege of not only working at My Sister’s House as a program assistant, but at the Atlanta Day Shelter as an ambassador. That means I’ve had the privilege to talk with hundreds of women. I’ve had the opportunity to be a listening ear for their stories and testimonies.

I’ve talked with women who have been on the run from someone that could potentially kill them. I’ve talked with women who lost everything they’ve ever had, right down to every family member. I’ve talked with women who decided that, just for a moment, they wanted to be able to forget everything that has happened to them, and picked a drug of choice to ease that pain. I’ve talked with girls who had to become women far too early in their lives due to their circumstances.

The thing, though, is that in this mess of life and circumstances, there is something beautiful waiting to rescue these women, and us all— that’s Jesus Christ. At Atlanta Mission, we believe in that restoration. Just like the prayer for restoration in Psalms, it is something that is prayed over the people we get to serve on a daily basis. This is life transformation in its messy loveliness. At the end of the day, we are all in our mess of life and need that healing power of the hand of God. I’ve seen that woman that was on the run, run right into the loving arms of her Father. I’ve seen that woman that lost everything, find wholeness in Christ. I’ve seen that woman go from needing one more hit, to needing just one more worship song. I’ve seen the girl that had to become a woman too young, become a woman of God.

OH Yes, this is *OUR* story, this is our song, praising our savior all the daylong.

 

Easter Week: Transformation Stories Continued

It is Maundy Thursday of Holy Week. During this day Jesus washed his disciples feet. This was a way for Jesus to set an example for his disciples that serving one another was of utmost importance. His act of washing his disciples feet was considered offensive, because their feet would have been so dirty. If Jesus were walking the earth today we know He would be at our shelters washing the feet of everyone who steps through our doors.

Watch Veronica’s story of transformation and see how she met Jesus at Atlanta Mission. We hope you all have an amazing Easter!

Easter Week: Transformation Stories

Transformation is what we are all about at Atlanta Mission and Easter week is a time for all of us to reflect on transformation in our own lives, and transformation in the lives of our friends who stay at our shelters. We are reminded that without Jesus this transformation is not possible. Join us in celebrating these lives that have been transformed at Atlanta Mission.

Jim Reese is Honored With The Kiwanis Golden Rule Award

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The recipient of the 2015 Golden Rule Award, presented by the Kiwanis Club of Atlanta, was Jim Reese, our President and CEO.
The Kiwanis Club of Atlanta presented Jim the Golden Rule Award in recognition of his “demonstration of selfless sacrifice, dedicated service and committed leadership to the Atlanta Community.” This is reflective of the second Object of Kiwanis International which states:
“To encourage the daily living of the Golden Rule in all human relationships”
Jim joins a long line of community leaders who have previously received this reward, including Truett Cathy, Bill Bolling, and many more. We are excited and congratulate Jim on how he has led Atlanta Mission for the past 7 years and how he continues to shine a light all around this community.

Become a Monthly Donor and Help End Homelessness

Ending homelessness in Atlanta is no small task. Each day, approximately 1,000 men, women, and children come through our front door seeking help and hope. Meanwhile, a growing group of donors known as “Faithful Friends” are making a consistent impact in each of their lives.

Faithful Friends are donors who provide critically needed support on a monthly basis to help end homelessness, one friend at a time. Committing to give monthly is a powerful way to walk alongside each one of the men, women, and children on their journey.

A monthly gift provides:

  • Shelter & Security
  • Nutritious Meals
  • Educational Services
  • Childcare
  • Career Development
  • Counseling & Discipleship
  • And much more!

Would you commit to providing hope and the chance at a fresh start through an automatic, tax-deductible gift?


To sign up to become a Faithful Friend:

1. Click the button below.
2. Enter the amount you would like to give
3. Select “Yes, automatically repeat this gift every month.”


As a Faithful Friend of Atlanta Mission, you will receive regular email updates about lives transformed because of your donations, and you will see the names and faces of those finding hope after homelessness. To find out more, visit atlantamission.org/monthlydonor.

Together, we can help end homelessness.

Race Day Info!

FAQ and Day of Information
Registration

Online registration will be paused an hour before and during race packet pick-up. If you would like to register for the race during those times, please do so at the designated store.

Online Registration will close at noon on Friday, February 19th. In person registration will be available on race morning between 7 and 8am.

Walk-up registration is available on the day of the race, however, the registration fee will increase from $30 to $35.

Packet Pickup

Thursday, February 18th, 11am – 1:30pm
Fidelity Bank – Powers Ferry
2401 Windy Ridge Parkway
Atlanta, GA 30339

Thursday, February 18th, 4 – 7pm
Big Peach Running Co. Town Brookhaven
705 Town Blvd, Ste. 340
Atlanta, GA 30319

Friday, February 19th, 4 – 7pm
Big Peach Running Co. Midtown
800 Peachtree St. NE
Atlanta, GA 30308

In order to pick up another participant’s packet, you must bring either a printed copy or email on a mobile device of their registration confirmation.

Parking Info

If you are driving to the race, there are garages listed below. Another travel option is to take MARTA to Philips Arena.

$7 per car at either parking garage:

World of Coca-Cola Garage:
178 Ivan Allen Jr Blvd Atlanta, GA 30313

Georgia Aquarium Parking Garage (two entrances):
357 Luckie Street Atlanta, GA 30313

248 Ivan Allen Jr Blvd Atlanta, GA 30313

$10 per car at the following parking garage:

American Cancer Society Garage:
113 Baker St NW Atlanta, GA 30313

Course Map

5K Course Map

For all other information visit www.atlantamission.org/race 

“Run In The Cold For Those Who Sleep In The Cold”

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Did you know… Atlanta Mission serves over 1,000 of these men, women and children every single day. The downtown men’s shelter alone is a refuge for over 400 men on a daily basis. We hope you will join us this February as donors, volunteers, community members and Atlanta Mission clients run side by side in the race to end homelessness.

Your registration fee and fundraising supports warm shelter and life transformation. In the past year, Atlanta Mission: 

  • Served over 713,967 meals
  • Provided 265,357 bed nights
  • Assisted 264 clients in attaining employment
  • Transformed the lives of 647 men, women, and children as their homelessness was ended

We want you to be a part of this! Register here!

Atlanta Mission 5K Race To End Homelessness

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Have you signed up for the Atlanta Mission 5k Race to End Homelessness?

On February 20, 2016, thousands of men, women and children will take to the streets of downtown Atlanta to run a race in the cold for those who sleep in the cold. The city of Atlanta is home to over 7,000 homeless men, women, and children who face the perilous conditions of winter without a roof over their heads.

Each race registration will provide a night of shelter for someone who would otherwise be sleeping in the cold.

To sign up for the race go to our race Registration page.

Join Us for The Forgotten Carols

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On Sunday, December 6th, 2015, join us for the Christmas musical production, The Forgotten Carols.

The Christmas musical The Forgotten Carols has become a new countrywide tradition. It’s the tale of Constance, a nurse too absorbed in her job to be bothered with Christmas. She’s assigned to John, an aging man believed to have some form of mental illness. What Constance finds, however, is a warm and spunky soul who is far from the “crazy old man” she expected. As John reveals the untold carols of the more “forgotten” characters in the Christmas story to Constance, he breaks through her steely exterior, guiding her to the Christmas carols waiting to be sung within her own heart. See this benefit performance for the Atlanta Mission at Cobb Energy Performing Arts Centre.

The Forgotten Carols musical is being made into a movie with production starting in Georgia right after Christmas.  The Atlanta Mission has teamed with the producers of the film to have the only live performance of the story in Georgia. As Atlanta Mission partners with the cast of The Forgotten Carols, this event is an opportunity to give a voice to the forgotten of our city and to provide a hope-filled Christmas for those who desperately need it. With all proceeds going to Atlanta Mission, those who stay with us during the Christmas season will receive nutritious meals, shelter and a warm bed, clothing, job attainment services, counseling, and the opportunity of choosing help to end their homelessness.

EVENT DETAILS

Sunday, December 6, 2015 – 7pm
Cobb Energy Performing Arts Centre
Tickets: $25 – $45, plus applicable fees

Purchase tickets via Ticketmaster or at the box office.

Buy Tickets Now

 

 

Veronica’s Story of Transformation

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“I want to tell donors, ‘Thank God for you!”

Your support of Atlanta Mission is helping Veronica leave addiction behind

Veronica was in jail, worrying about her two children, wondering where they would go after she got out. And that’s when a young lady shared that she knew of a wonderful place that would help Veronica and her family—Atlanta Mission. “Right then, I knew that’s where God was sending me,” Veronica says.

Addiction had been dogging Veronica for decades, and she knew it had to stop. “I used to have a drug addiction which God cured me from instantaneously. Fifteen years ago, I just stopped. Unfortunately, I picked up alcohol, which is what brought me to the Mission. I have been a functioning alcoholic for about five years now, but I couldn’t stop drinking and driving. I came here voluntarily because I knew that I couldn’t stop drinking as easily as I stopped drugs.”

“My children have been through a lot with me and my addiction. I agonized over whether to bring them with me or not—but I felt coming to the program with them would help heal our family.

And it’s working. They didn’t know what to expect, but Atlanta Mission staff helped get them in school and assisted me with getting school supplies and backpacks.”

“I know that my being here would not be possible if it wasn’t for the generosity of people’s gifts . . .”

Veronica is working hard to change her life and leave her addictions behind forever. But because of friends and partners like you, her time at Atlanta Mission has also opened her eyes to God’s love and His calling for her life.

“I actually graduated from Le Cordon Bleu College of Culinary Arts. My dream was to become a personal chef for people with medical problems. So since I have come here, I have been working in the kitchen, and God has laid it on my heart to feed the homeless and the needy.”

“This is a great program and it has given me an intimate relationship with God. I had walked away from Him, but coming here has put Him back into my life. I’m going to get my recovery . . . but I know I can’t do this without Him.”

Veronica’s heart is filled with joy and gratitude for her new beginning. “I want to tell donors, ‘Thank God for you!’ It is a blessing from God that we have people in our lives that care enough to give to someone they don’t know. I feel loved and cared about. Thank you for helping me in my fresh start.”

Thank you for the gift you share today to help save and change more lives like Veronica’s!

Do You Know?

Do you know how many hungry and hurting men, women, and children in our community you helped through your support of Atlanta Mission in 2013? Test your knowledge …

1) Meals Served:
a) 552,989 b) 880,109 c) 775,583

2) Nights of Shelter Provided:
a) 195,564 b) 222,413 c) 298,358

3) People who obtained employment:
a) 220 b) 375 c) 487

Answers
In 2013, Atlanta Mission . . .
1b) Served more than 880,109 meals
2c) Provided more than 298,358 nights of shelter
3c) Helped more than 487 people obtain employment