I received a note recently from one of our Matthew 25 Initiative workers who is on the front lines serving Covid-19 victims. She wrote:
“I am struggling with the weight of grief and guilt. What am I supposed to do when I know those we serve are hurting so badly?”
I was really moved by this personal, heartfelt lament. I am so proud of these people. You would be too.
I have been told, however, that much of this work could end without immediate financial help. Let me explain how you can help real people in real ways.
The Matthew 25 Initiative is a vibrant network of Anglican ministries and leaders that serve some of the most poor and under-resourced people in North America. There are about 100 of these outreach efforts in the US and Canada connected to our dioceses or congregations. These ministries support shelters, food banks, diaper pantries, and counseling centers. They are led by lay people and clergy. Some work in the inner city. Others are rural.
These brothers and sisters in Christ are amazing, and their work is truly needed today. Not everyone can quarantine. The homeless have no homes to go to, and our ministries are continuing to serve them while taking extra precautions to lessen the threat of infection. This critical work and these necessary precautions come with a financial cost.
If these significant financial needs are not met, the work is going to grind to a halt in these terrible times of pandemic. It is our goal to raise $200,000 to help in this effort. This work is so important because it is the work of Jesus along the margins of our society across North America.
Please read what one lay person wrote to me recently:
“I am being called to take on extra duties as I serve a nursing home for the deaf community where I’ve served for 10 years. God continues to provide many miracles in this place on a regular basis. Many times, through the death of a loved one, emotional/spiritual healing takes place with family members. I am so humbled to be central, many times, in that process of healing.”
She has an Easter hope, and she is able to share the Gospel with the community she serves. $200,000 will go a long way to support leaders like her.
To many, this may not seem like a lot of money when our government and leaders are talking about billions and trillions of dollars, but this is a lot of money for these workers. This money will be a direct aid that will go to support real people on the front lines of this vital work.
Here’s another example of the challenges these ministries are facing during this crisis:
“In supporting those with intellectual and physical disabilities, we live a close life together where germs spread quickly. With the nationwide shortage, group homes are not always considered ‘essential’ in terms of the supply chain. Our orders for PPE supplies have been canceled. Pray that we would operate from an awareness of what we have in abundance and not from a place of scarcity.”
I don’t know how else to say it except to say it boldly: I need your help to pray and give.
One person heard about this genuine need and has already committed to give $100,000. Every dollar we raise together will be added to this lead gift and matched in the field.
Can you help us meet this goal of $200,000 for Covid-19 pandemic relief?
As we raise aid for these ministries, I will be sure that it is sent to support the workers in the Matthew 25 Initiative. Please give to meet this need; it is truly urgent.
The Most Rev. Dr. Foley Beach
Archbishop and Primate, Anglican Church in North America
PS: I pray you are safe. Allison and I are sheltered in place outside of Atlanta. We are safe here. However, I hope you have noticed that the work of the Province goes on. Matthew 25 is one of the best ways you can help frontline workers from Anglican congregations who are serving a population in need.