building a house home where love can dwell

I was chatting with a friend the other day who is really busy…being a wife to a soldier (Memorial Day hat tip!)…moving their family literally across the country…being mom and teacher to their children…AND growing a baby. She sent me the sweetest video of their soon-to-be-not-youngest dancing, and laughing, and toddling, and I gushed a little and said that I have baby fever. She “lol’d” and asked, “When don’t you?”

And that’s true. I pretty much always have baby fever. Even when I have one of those kinds of days, I’m nearly always asking God to let a little more love spill over into and then overflow out of our home.  I get more than a little goofy over babies: Hold all the babies! Love all the babies! And if you tell me you are having a baby, whether your first or 12th or somewhere in between, I am going to be excited for you.

Don’t get me wrong, though, I know that baby-having is hard, hard work. Preparing a place in your life for a little one is one of the most daunting tasks in life, and this daunting thing becomes exponentially more difficult with each curveball that life throws.   Being a mother, takes a whole lot of support, and encouragement, and help, of all kinds (material, mental, emotional, and spiritual). If you know a mom who denies this fact she is probably hiring a maid and a therapist under the cloak of darkness.

I get a little goofy over moms, too: Love all the mommas! Encourage all the mommas!

Enter the topic at hand:

Mary's Mantle

My friend, Rahki from The Pitter Patter Diaries works for a little place called Mary’s Mantle. I use the word “little” here lightly. Because the work that is happening is something amazing:

The founders of Mary’s Mantle, a Catholic residential program for homeless, pregnant women, felt that no woman should have to choose abortion because they had no place to lay their head. The doors of the metro-Detroit home opened in June of 2010. Since then, 44 women and their children have called it home. The mothers who come to reside at Mary’s Mantle come from all walks of life. Some are recovering addicts, some are recovering from the scars of past abortion, some have been prostitutes, some have been in pornography, some have been victims of domestic violence, many have extremely damaged relationships with their families, and all have been broken by abuse, whether emotional or physical. The time they spend in residence is designed to heal and restore them. While staff work with them to address the causes and symptoms of their homelessness (job training, housing searches, etc.), the greatest work done is to teach them about the love of God, help them to begin healing, and learn how to be faithful mothers so they can break the cycle of abuse.

Being mother can be rough, and messy, and discouraging even when you are surrounded by love and support and encouragement, by food and shelter and basic necessities and not-so-basic luxuries. Take away one of these, some of these, or all of these, and we should not be at all surprised at choices that women make out of desperation.  If we want to live in a culture of life, we have to build homes where love can dwell.

And this is precisely what Mary’s Mantle is doing.  Well, for the past five years they have been renting a house where love can dwell. So now…NOW…Mary’s Mantle is buying a house where love can dwell. The house has been bought; the renovations have been underway; the move date has been set. But Mary’s Mantle needs a little boost for the “final” touches, “from furniture for the formal living room and workshop area, to computers where the moms can look for jobs and take classes online“.

Let’s help provide some hospitality for this home!

I’m going to be all done talking now so that YOU can click*click and go help.  Rahki sent along the GoFundMe link for Mary’s Mantle, but she did mention that some people have been experiencing difficulties with it. I checked it out prior to posting, and it was working, but JUST in case, you can do what I did and go donate through the Mary’s Mantle website.

Love always wins, you guys. Always. So whether it’s a little or a lot, let’s go shower some love on this home!

How to Feed a Friend

meals link up button

Maybe this should read, “How to Feed and Be Fed”.

I’m not sure.

I am also not sure about how wild I am about the “button”.  I’m only a graphic designer in my dreams, y’all.

If you missed the post in which I discussed MEALS!!!, you can find it here. Read the rambly logic of it all. All posts are welcome.  I have heaps o’ appreciation for posts that cover nitty, gritty details like Kathryn posted here and just as much for the posts that cover how to still be generous when life is nitty and gritty, like Rachel posted here.  Love is in the details and love is in giving when the giving is tough, even if the giving doesn’t look as perfect as one had hoped.

The “rules” are as follows:

1) Write up your post on a meal you are taking or a meal you have received.

2) Include all the details that make this meal truly a labor of love.

3) Pictures are 142% encouraged.

4) Grab the button if you want.  Only if you want to.  And if you got mad-styling-graphic skills and more-time/patience-than-me, hit me up to prettify that thing up there.

5) Tell yo friends.  The more people to post, the more ideas I…me…I mean WE…have when push-comes-to-shove-baby-is-out-time-to-make-a-meal! (Meals for any sort of occasion, happy or sad, are welcome.)

6) Use the tool below to link up your post so we (read: me) have allthegoodideas in one, blessed spot.