Pastor Lives on the Streets to Raise Money for Homeless Shelters
Reverend Rick Cole, a pastor from California, started living on the streets to raise money for a homeless charity, Sacremento Steps Forward.
He raised more than $100,000 for homeless shelter program by pledging to spend two weeks on the street; however, he met his mark within one week of the effort.
He’s since extended his goal to $150,000, half the amount the group hopes to raise for the Winter 2014/2015 season.
He only took some spare cash and a change of clothes, and he relied on the community for the help. While he always had the guarantee of a comfortable home waiting, many people living on the streets do not have that assurance. In fact, hundreds of people have died while homeless in Sacramento over the past decade.
The Purpose of the Pastor
Therefore, Rev. Cole, who leads an incredible 4,000 member church, decided to reach out to the people, instead of asking the people to listen to him. While living on the streets, he began to understand the avoidance that homeless men, women, and children face on a daily basis. It has a serious effect on self-esteem and self-worth. These negative feelings can lead to never finding the power to work towards getting off the street.
He addressed the crowd at his church, Capital Christian Center, on Saturday night:
“What I am experiencing (is) beginning to feel their pain, beginning to feel their loneliness and to feel the sorrow of their journey.”
The donations go to the Winter Sanctuary program for the Sacramento Steps Forward non-profit organization. Cole acts as the Board Chair. The purpose is for providing a place to sleep, warm meal, and counseling to the homeless during the cold winter months.
While there are many different religious and nonreligious opinions, everyone should be able to get behind the loving, caring message that the California pastor has spoken through his actions. Considering the huge amount of donations, many people support the organization that hopes to help these displaced individuals. Hopefully, it helps people realize that compassion and community are crucial for the development of society, without leaving anyone behind.