Peniel–Temenos Catholic Worker

Temenos Catholic Worker

Peniel, July 2022

“Where Jacob Walked With God!”

P.O. Box 642656

San Francisco, CA 94164

http://www.temenos.org

415-305-2124

Fr. River Damien Sims, sfw, D.Min.,D.S.T.

PRIDE, 2022

Journal of an Alien Street Priest:

San Francisco Pride, yesterday, was full of protest over the recent Supreme Court decision and full of joy, and pride over the freedom the LGBTQ community enjoys today.

For over twenty years Temenos has been in charge of the Accessibility area, where seniors and people with disabilities sit.

We had youth working, as you can see from our photos:

From different backgrounds, one homeless youth, and three others worked for us on this Pride Sunday.

Looking back through the years, seeing the countless youth we have worked with at Pride and all the youth they represent, witnessing their pain, confusion, fears, and desperation, we cry, we smile, and we give thanks to God for allowing us )and I mean all of us) the honor.

People often wrestle with what we do, and looking at the faces of these young people–they are what we do. Listening, simply listening moment to moment, giving them of our time, the two greatest gifts of all.

A number of years ago an outreach worker from another agency walked with me on the street. And as we always do we listened, gave food, and socks, and moved on. Sometimes we listened for an hour. In the end, this young worker, commented, “We have to carry a clipboard and check off how many people we see, required to talk with a certain number, and only certain ages, you simply spend time with everyone, and for as long as needed. How awesome that is.”

Our ministry is that of a pastor, who listens, and shepherds his flock. We hurt, we cry, and suffer along with these guys.

Sitting at the base of a statue yesterday waiting for two of our workers, a young man, dressed in a skimpy leather outfit was crying. Someone had taken a picture of him and sent it to his dad. He said his dad would beat him because he was gay. He was afraid to go home. I gave him a card and told him to call me if that happened. I hear stories similar to his day in and day out. Homophobia is well and alive! San Francisco is different than most parts of the country and California itself. Homophobia is WELL AND ALIVE. It is deadly!

Today’s lesson from Matthew 8:18-22  where Jesus calls all of us to follow him with radical discipleship. He understands the way discipleship can be challenging, which is how we get to the non sequitur: “Foxes have dens and birds of the sky have nests, but the Son of Man has nowhere to rest his head.’

We might read that line, wonder at the meaning, and simply move on, but it has meaning for us today. If we say that we will follow Jesus wherever he leads, do we understand that it will not be easy, that we too may find ourselves with nowhere to rest our heads?

We don’t get salvation without sacrifice, without embracing the radical–letting the safety nets drop away and trusting that God is the only security measure we need.  Jesus calls us to embrace the radical! 

To go out and feed the hungry, clothe the naked, sit with the dead and dying, to walk and listen, and protest until our government leaders listen! Following Jesus is radical! 

Deo Gratias! Thanks be to God!

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This month we will continue our basic schedule of outreach five days and nights a week; talking to people on snap chat and phone.

Thank you for your support during this first half of the year and hope you will remember us during July, money is short, and expenses for supplies continue to be needed.

When I  use “we” I simply mean those who have supported us financially, and with prayer are walking on the street as well, symbolically.

Again we are beggars and we thank you for your support!

P.O. Box 642656

Paypal and website: http://www.temenos.org

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