Heaven and Hellish Heat

I walk into Fellowship House after a summer vacation week in the mountains, wondering how the staff and kids did during last week’s series of 100 degree days. I figure they must have been wiped out, washed up and half sick in our less than ideally air conditioned gym and class rooms.

Executive Director, Doug Wagner comes smiling out of his office, eyes sparkling with excitement and almost shouts, “I love the summer!!” My puzzled look elicits an exuberant, “We get six hours every day to work with these kids!” “Wasn’t the heat a problem,” I ask. ”Not at all. They loved every minute of it. And on top of that they got to go swimming on Friday!”

The reason for Doug’s excitement soon becomes clear. Our After School Program only gets the kids for 2 hours a day, part of which necessarily goes to helping with homework. In our churches we lament the fact that we get just an hour of Sunday School each week to teach our kids Bible and Christian values. It’s the same problem during the school year at Fellowship House, but the summer program gives adequate time for Bible teaching, crafts and play. Furthermore they get, as Doug puts it, “Two squares a day!” Yes, a nutritious breakfast and lunch are provided for these kids, some of whom may not eat that well at home.

Looking back, I wish my kids had been exposed to six weeks of two hours of Bible teaching daily. They got fed well, had good air conditioning in summer and warmth in the winter, and they were able to go away to summer camps and family vacations, but I know they would have benefited from the spiritual environment we provide at Fellowship House. Forty-nine kids from South Camden are privileged to receive that essential training.

Your gifts are making all this possible. Thank you so much for your support! Even now, we would love to expand this wonderful heavenly space in the city. Presently we’re at capacity. There is a waiting list. We are hoping the Lord will show us a way to provide even more kids from our area with a heavenly place in the midst of what can sometimes be alarming surroundings.

Won’t you do what you can, as you plan your vacation days and wonder how less fortunate folks deal with hellish heat?