July marked the start of the Olympics. All of us around the world are feeling unified through sport, marveling at some of the finest athletes around the world, amazed at the passion they have for doing what they love. In so many ways our staff are Olympians. Each day as they get ready to welcome guests, they see the triptych in our dining room which depicts the Gospel story of the fishes and loaves. The image is a reminder to be thankful for what we have and encourages us to freely share with our brothers and sisters who patiently wait on our lines everyday.
Our staff and dedicated volunteers consistently go the extra mile every day! Despite the challenges of the past year and a half we have never run out of food and have NEVER turned anyone away. How amazing is that? I consider it to be Bread & Life’s gold medal accomplishment.
As we watch the Olympics, we can sense the disappointment on the athletes faces as the stands remain empty–a true reminder of the danger that COVID-19 presents to them and those around them. We know firsthand that this virus isn’t going away and that new variants are lurking in the background requiring us to be even more vigilant.
As the country begins to mandate vaccinations, my hope is that anyone who can get vaccinated does. Our partnerships with Amazon Studios, Carbon Health and Care for the Homeless continue to provide accurate information and free vaccinations to anyone in need. We are also committed to being on the frontlines fighting for housing and economic justice. We are working with Mobilization for Justice and Urban Justice to support community members in navigating the applications for rental assistance and Excluded Workers Fund. The pandemic continues to impact the most vulnerable in our community, and we will continue our efforts to press local, city and state officials to increase funding for emergency food programs like Bread and Life.
In closing, I am reminded of this anonymous quote, “Excellence is never an accident; it is the result of high intention, sincere effort, intelligent direction, skillful execution and the vision to see obstacles as opportunities.” I am grateful every day for our champion staff, and our steadfast supporters joining us as we strive to serve our brothers and sisters in a merciful, compassionate manner.