In the midst of a busy school morning, I was alerted to a homeless man being on the school property during our morning drop off procedure. I immediately thought of all the things I needed to do and that I “did not have time for this today.”
School security and keeping our campus safe for our students is always upper most in my mind, and as I approached the man I was focused on “getting rid of this problem” because I had other things that needed to be done.
The man in need was docile and praying his rosary on the bench in front of church. He was a little confused and could not understand why I needed him to leave the property while the children were present. I determined that I needed to call 911 and let the police “take care of the problem.”
When the police officers arrived I asked them if there were any county services that could provide some assistance. We discussed possible solutions and presented them to our visitor.
My mind went immediately to sending out an e-mail to our parents to let them know what had happened and what actions had taken place. Within a few minutes of hitting “send,” I was overwhelmed with responses from parents asking how they could help – did we need money to give to the man, did he have a place to stay, had we checked out some of the county services and offered them to the man – concern – compassion – resources.
I was taken aback – quickly reminded of how I had missed the presence of God right in my midst – too busy and worried about my stuff. I was reminded of Pope Francis’ constant message to care for those who are in need – to be selfless. I was reminded of Mary and Joseph being turned away but finding comfort in a manger.
Thank you to those parents and families who quickly and gently reminded me that I missed the Message, I missed the Presence, I missed seeing the Face of God in another person. Go Warriors!
Mary, mother of all, help us to serve you by filling the hungry with good things.