by Jeremy Reynalds, Ph.D.
Founder and CEO
Joy Junction Inc.
Christmas is one of my favorite times around Joy Junction. We decorate our multi-purpose building to ring in the season and all the kids help. Like the wise men, generous friends from all over Albuquerque bring gifts to share with our guests. We even have a big Christmas dinner with all the fixings. There is a spirit of peace and love and anticipation in the air.
As you know, though, it’s all very different in mid year. The scorching heat of July makes Christmas feel very far away. In many ways, July can be the opposite of the holiday season. The heat zaps the energy of the weary souls. One day melts into the next. The summer is clearly a challenging season-sometimes life threatening- if you are homeless and hungry.
Yet, the Spirit of Christmas is what our homeless guests so desperately need all year long.
They need to know they are loved. They need hope. You see, the summer is when the homeless and hungry are often forgotten by many people in our area. Your support allows us to shelter the homeless…Like Joan who grew up with an alcoholic father and then stumbled into an alcohol addiction herself. She is now sheltered in an environment away from alcohol where she can heal and focus on her recovery.
Your support also lets us feed the hungry, like Richard and Susan who were married a few years ago and then welcomed their son Joshua into the world. Richard, his family’s breadwinner, was laid off from his job as a welder. For the first three years of their marriage, they supported themselves, but now they need help. Today they have the support they need to care for Joshua while also seeking new employment.
We also love the broken, like Sandra and her two children who came several months ago escaping a physically abusive marriage. The bruises are finally fading, but there continues to be pain in her soul. We have patiently loved her, and she is just beginning to trust again.
The services to shelter, feed, and love the homeless, hungry, and broken are only possible through the love, prayer and support of people like you.
Your support helps keep the Spirit of Christmas going throughout the year. On July 23rd, we will be holding a big Christmas in July banquet for the men, women, and families who, for now, call Joy Junction home. The Joy Junction kitchen manager and her team will prepare a tasty Christmas meal of ham, with all the fixings including coffee and desert, just to further show our guests they are loved.
While this banquet will be a host of fun for our guests, every meal they receive at Joy Junction is a blessing. It is a symbol of hope that new life can happen for them.
Thank you for your support! It helps make everything possible. We just couldn’t do it without you. We’d also welcome you as a volunteer. Call 505 463 4818 for more information.
Merry Christmas in July!