Jesus had the unique ability of knowing people’s needs. Because of his flawless omniscience, he knew the weaknesses as well as the physical and spiritual needs of all those he met. He not only enjoyed discovering those needs, but he filled them perfectly. Without a doubt, he did not approach them as ordinary Christians do today. Often, most of us try to make Jesus known and try to engage in spiritual discussions without having taken the time to know the other person’s background, Jesus loved people in a different way. Indeed, the Gospels describe how he interacted with each person he met in a new and particular way.
Bouffe pour tous (Food for everyone) has been serving faithfully for twenty years. Launched by members of the Église de l’Espoir in Longueuil, this organization aims to provide healthy food to the neighbourhood’s poor and needy. It offers grocery baskets for the modest sum of $11. Nearly 60 families receive fruit, vegetables and grain products each week. Some visit the premises weekly, some come monthly, and others receive these essential products only a few times a year. It is estimated that between 150 and 200 families benefit from the Bouffe pour tous grocery baskets annually.
Sweet Carmen lives close by. She was in need and came from a difficult background, so she regularly came to get affordable groceries. One day, she decided help as a volunteer. She wanted to give back to others what she had received through the baskets. But, without realizing it, food was not only thing that she was seeking. Carmen has come to know a wonderful family that has not only taken care of her food needs, but her physical and spiritual needs as well.
One day, while she was lying in bed because of an injury, Christians from the organization brought her lunch and helped her to move around her apartment. She had never experienced such a sincere display of love before. She was completely overwhelmed by the way this family loved and helped each other. Little by little, she discovered the love of Jesus embodied by these believers.
"By this all will know that you are my disciples, if you have love for one another."
The love we demonstrate among Christians is far from ordinary. People are often surprised by such generosity, selfless acts, and outpouring love. This expression of love between Christians of the Église de l’Espoir deeply touched Carmen’s heart, as she experienced Christ’s love through these brothers and sisters. Before her conversion, people were already investing in her and caring for her needs, even helping her to make a budget. Over the weeks, she realized that she was adopted into a new family.
She accepted Jesus’ sacrifice and became a Christian, which not only transformed her life, but also the believers in the Church. Her simple joy was a breath of fresh air for the christians involved in Bouffe pour tous. Carmen’s conversion and baptism gave hope to the Church and encouraged believers to show tolerance and compassion toward different behaviours displayed by needy people.
The Lord has a special place in His heart for widows, orphans and the underprivileged. He finds great joy in providing for the poor and needy. With a smile on His face, He took Carmen’s heart in His tender arms and lovingly and eternally regenerated it. With newfound brothers, sisters, and a loving father, the orphan is now part of a family.