Every day you meet new people in The Shelter. That makes our work very interesting. I recently met Kim, a man from war-torn Ukraine. We want to share a little bit about his story.
Kim decided to flee to Amsterdam, where his brother lived. They didn’t have a close relationship and hadn’t talked for 10 years. When he arrived, he realized his brother had temporarily left the country on holiday.
Sleeping on the street
Kim slept on the street for a few nights, during which time he lost everything: his backpack, his telephone, his laptop. He went to the Salvation Army, and they recommended our cleaner position to him.
You have lost everything, but maybe it was needed to find God.
That’s how we got to know him. Kim told me: “The atmosphere in the Shelter is so special, so loving, and so warm-hearted. This is completely new to me.” I told him, “You have lost everything, but maybe it was needed to find God.” He reacted, “That is just what I was thinking today!” Then we prayed together. We also prayed for a restored relationship with his brother.
Prayer is very important. In a conversation with guests, I often ask them if and how I can pray for them. This question surprises most guests, because they don’t often hear it. It gives another swing to a conversation. We want to let people taste life with God. To pray together, to bless each other, is so powerful! When guests leave the hostel, we give them a thank you card with the blessing of St. Patrick:
“May the road rise to meet you,
May the wind be always at your back,
May the sun shine warm upon your face,
The rains fall soft upon your fields and,
Until we meet again,
May God hold you
In the palm of His hand.”