About ten years ago a family inquired about Multi-Housing Ministry (MHMA). They stepped into our apartment at 1126 Coleridge Road with two daughters. Some people ask us how much it costs for their child to attend our program and we always get a smile when we explain it’s free and we’re mostly volunteers.
Elizabeth and Alondra Rodriguez found us and became faithful in attending. Their mother, Paz, was always clear she wanted them to do well in school. After a while the family moved down the road and lived in an apartment complex on Martin Luther King Jr. drive. Every week mom and the girls arrived late because they’d walk a mile from their new home to come participate with us. Years later their family moved to Piedmont Park Apartments where they reside now and we were all surprised to see them again! When these young ladies weren’t at work they were working hard with us on their school work and learning the life lessons we teach from the Bible.
|Elizabeth and Alondra Rodriguez, 2020 MHMA High School Graduates|
These sisters crossed the finish line on Monday June 1st at 7:30pm at Asheboro High School. They did it despite the hardships life has thrown at them. The family knows the struggle of no transportation. Alondra had a baby last fall and stayed in school.
|Grandma Paz and Alondra's daughter Sabrina enjoying cake Jane Crumpler made.|
In MHMA we had plans to have a school’s out party at Caraway with a focus on the Rodriguez sister’s graduation. Because of COVID19 we canceled but we still wanted to celebrate their graduation. Jane Crumpler and Jeni Johnson took a family meal from KFC with some gifts and had a picnic outside under a tree. We talked about how they walked far to come do their homework with us. They have had to work harder than other students because their parents don’t speak English and cannot help them with their homework.
|MHMA Graduate Picnic Celebration|
The sisters are now on the hunt for full-time jobs. Our MHMA volunteers will help them apply and proofread applications for them. We will also help them apply to college as well, whatever they choose.
MHMA has made a huge difference in the lives of many students over the past 20 years. Some have defied the odds and were the first person in their family to attend college. One young man, an RCC student, brought us a note around Christmastime thanking us for laying the foundation for him to follow Jesus Christ. He said, “Christ alone gives me endless hope and relentless joy.” This young man said he thinks he would have never done his homework if it wasn’t for us. He just wanted a snack bag and did his homework to be able to receive the snack bag we gave when the students leave. Students know they have to complete all their homework to leave with their snack bag. Students might come for a snack bag but they receive so much more. They are loved, encouraged and taught timeless Biblical principles that help them make good choices in life.
Volunteers come seeking to help someone and learn quickly they are the ones getting a blessing by developing relationships with our families and students in MHMA.
In these stressful times one volunteer became concerned for a black family we’ve loved for years. She said,
“I couldn’t stand it any longer. I was concerned about this family with all the COVID stuff and racial unrest. I didn’t have a way to call so I took a chance that they’d be home. I stopped by KFC and got a meal for 6 and then Food Lion for a box of ice cream sandwiches. All four children in the family were home plus a cousin! One ran out the door when she saw me! We stood outside at a distance and talked. I had my little speech prepared about praying for them and others who have felt the sting of racism. I had only started with, ‘you guys know how much I love you, don’t you?’ What followed was powerful. While they believe people would be upset about the murder of a black man by a white police officer, one said, ‘they shouldn’t be stealing and setting things on fire. That doesn’t help us. There are good police officers.’ We talked about how there are good and bad people in every profession. One child said, “We know you’re not like that.” I know I cannot change the world but I can have conversations with those God puts in my path along the way. There are things we all can do to promote racial harmony.”