Our daughter texted us, tweeted us, left phone messages, and emailed. I think she wanted to get our attention. She’s been volunteering once a month to deliver groceries to seniors, and didn’t we want to help?
Really, how could we say, “Quit bugging me about your needy seniors when I have water aerobics class!” So we had to do the right thing and say, “Sure we’d be happy to help.”
Which is how we ended up at Metropolitan Community Church today, helping assemble bags of groceries and making deliveries through We Are Family DC. We worked with a regular volunteer who knew all the ropes, plus a group of nine students from the Student Muslim Association at George Washington University.
I chatted with some of the students. One young woman identified herself as Palestinian, and I said I’d been thinking a lot about Israel and Palestine all week, which is true, because of my writing. I was curious about how she got out of the West Bank, and before I could ask about it, she volunteered that she had Jordanian citizenship. She asked me if I’d been in the Church of the Holy Sepulchre. That’s the church in Jerusalem built over the place where Jesus was crucified. I said Yes, and we talked about how beautiful it is, how moving to be there. So that’s what we chatted about, this Muslim woman and I.
The actual grocery deliveries were not difficult at all. We knocked on the door of each apartment quite loudly and announced who we were. Then when the door opened, we got to do the fun part: hand them groceries and inquire whether they would like a turkey too? Usually I carried the groceries in to the kitchen and set them on the counter. Every apartment I went in was tidy and clean.
People were happy to see us. One woman was there taking care of her mother, who was on oxygen, and appeared to be quite sick. The daughter must not have known the groceries were expected. When she saw them she exclaimed loudly: “Thank you Jesus!”
Yes indeed. Thank you Jesus!
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