Local warming centers in need
SOUTH BEND, IN.-- The chilly temperatures this winter, making staying warm extremely difficult for some people--but thankfully there are groups trying to help.
For the past two years, Miracle Revival Church has been doing their part to be the helping hands that many in our South Bend community can turn to when things get tough and cold.
“This ministry here is about restoration," says Pastor Andrew Snyder. "We took this building it was dilapidated and we restored the external side of it but the inside what’s really going on is the restoration of the people it’s the restoration of the city.”
On the corner of William and West LaSalle Avenue sits Miracle Revival Church.
A building that has seen owners and visitors pass through for decades.
In the last two years, Pastor Snyder and his wife came to acquire the space and start to transform it from the inside out.
After numerous hours of making sure that the heat can run, that running water is available, they were able to open their doors to South Bend's most vulnerable in the place of a warming center.
They offer a space to get warm, eat and spend time in community with others who want to help individuals find another path.
A path Snyder says is vital for those who feel they have nothing.
“The greatest thing is to see results," says Pastor Snyder. "We see people whose lives are changed. Maybe they were bound to addictions and they come out of their addiction to get a place, get a job and contribute to society and the burden is off their back. We’ve seen a few cases of that and it’s a blessing to see that kind of stuff it makes you smile on the inside.”
However giving is not the issue for Snyder nor the people in need.
Pastor Snyder says no matter the help given, homelessness is a unique burden that requires the right amount of time and care to heal.
“The character sets can be a problem cause of they have hotels for now, they are putting homeless people in hotels," says Pastor Snyder. "Some of the people that can’t manage to behave themselves then get put out on the streets again and we end up picking that back up so there are a lot of people with addiction issues whether it’s drugs or alcohol. We’ve got a real case of it in south bend it’s serious.”
While Pastor Snyder says there is a lot that needs to be done on a city level to help the homeless population--he is still doing his part everyday to try and help people to turn over a new leaf.
The ministry provides heat, snacks, spiritual and job advice all to help get people back on their feet.
Miracle Revival Church provides these services all through donations and out of Snyder's own pocket as they are not affiliated with the city and do not receive any government grants.
So where could the ministry use some help?
Snyder says it takes a village praying and coming together.
“But people in the community can receive a blessing from helping people not in a great position. And it’s not about money, you can throw money at this forever and it’s not necessarily going to solve the problem," says Snyder. "It’s about people’s mindsets and getting inside their heads and helping them realize they can be the people they are called to be. They don’t have to stay in this broken down trodden place, there is hope. We don’t have a homeless crisis we have a hopeless crisis. People just give up. When they realize they can stand back up again and be okay? They just need encouragement."
If you are looking for ways to help the church continue their ministry you can bring your donations to 415 West LaSalle Avenue in South Bend.
Some specific items that would be beneficial to their guests are:
- Fresh fruit
- Bottled water
- Coffee/tea/hot chocolate
- Styrofoam plates, bowls & cups
- Microwaveable foods/meals
- Juice (orange, apple, grape, cranberry)
- Hand sanitizer
- Disposable masks
- Paper towels
- Toilet paper
- Clorox disinfectant wipes
- Baby wipes
- Dish soap/rags
- Hand warmers
- Boots for men and women
- Long John's
Miracle Revival Church is open from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. daily.
You can contact Pastor Snyder at (574)-217-3000 if you have any other questions regarding the warming center or with how you can help.