Faithful To Serve

Faithful To Serve

When John walks through the doors of the kitchen, eyes light up, and he is greeted with hellos and high fives.

He’s no stranger to the Mission. Since retiring from his work as a veterinarian almost a year ago, John has been a faithful volunteer in the kitchen at the Men’s Campus serving at least twice a week.

While the issue of homelessness wasn’t always on John’s radar, his heart for giving back and serving others has permeated his life. A three-year stint in the Peace Corps in West Africa gave John a unique perspective on interacting with individuals who have so little.

“I retired in April and started looking for a place to serve, a place where I could give back,” shared John. “Someone mentioned Nashville Rescue Mission to me, so I visited the website, then signed up to volunteer. I try to go twice a week. I usually sign up for lunch, but if all the lunch spots are full, I’ll sign up to serve dinner. Volunteering at the Mission has been a deeply rewarding experience for me.”

“There’s something special about handing someone a tray of food and hearing them say ‘thank you,’” said John. “Seeing someone’s needs being met first-hand is meaningful. You can tell by the looks on their faces that these men are extremely grateful for the meal they are receiving. I also have the opportunity to interact with men in the Mission’s Life Recovery Program who are working in the kitchen. Over time, it’s been a joy to watch them grow and change. In many cases, I’ve seen men go from being sad and quiet to smiling, joking, and being happy. The transformation is amazing.”

When asked what keeps him coming back each week, John replied, “I’ve had a good life, and I want to give back out of my abundance. I encourage others who are looking for something to do with their time to get involved at the Mission. It’s a great place to serve.”


Learn more about how to get involved by visiting us online at: https://nashvillerescuemission.org/get-involved/

Celebrating Easter

Celebrating Easter

Easter is more than bunnies, baskets, and colored eggs.

Easter is about hope, resurrection, and new life.

It’s about celebrating the greatest miracle the world has ever known—Jesus rising from the dead and bringing HOPE to a hurting world.

But for too many people in this community, life has gone from bewildering to discouraging to hopeless. Chris, a recent guest staying at the Mission, describes feeling worthless, like he was stuck. He was at rock bottom for a long time, and during that time he attempted suicide. He came to the Mission looking for a meal and a safe place to sleep.

Sadly, there are many more people like Chris in the community. They face different circumstances, from joblessness to debt to debilitating illness to loneliness to addiction to powerlessness to depression. Leaving them feeling trapped, disheartened—and hopeless.

Hopelessness sucks the life and resilience out of people.

It’s why Easter is such an important holiday at Nashville Rescue Mission.

“Easter is a great time to remind people dealing with homelessness and poverty that their dark and cold season in life can transform into a season of new growth—and that there is always hope,” said Rev. Glenn Cranfield, president and CEO of the Mission.

Celebrating Easter at the Mission starts with a Good Friday service held in the chapel where guests, family, and friends gather to reflect upon the sacrifice Christ made. And while the service is underway, volunteers and their families will be busy in the Mission’s kitchen preparing food. Following the service, everyone will gather in the dining room for a traditional Easter meal, like the one you might eat at home. Guests will enjoy ham, green beans, mashed potatoes, salad, and rolls, along with a delicious slice of pie.

Over the course of the holiday weekend, thousands of meals will be prepared and served by hundreds of volunteers contributing countless hours to make this holiday special for guests of the Mission.

“While the Mission provides so much more than food—a hot, nutritious meal may be just what it takes for someone who is experiencing homelessness to step through our doors and, in the process, learn more about the other services we offer that can help them get off the streets permanently,” said Cranfield. “A traditional meal, like maybe their mom used to make—served by volunteers from all walks of life who have chosen to spend their Easter serving at the Mission—goes a long way in creating a loving, home-like atmosphere for our guests to enjoy. This act of kindness has a visible and indelible impact on our guests.”

As many come to the Mission this Easter season, please join us in praying that God will make visible to them the things in their lives that are in need of His resurrecting power.

Like the Father, there is rejoicing over each one that comes. And while there may be more who choose not to come, it is because of your support that the Mission’s doors are always open.

Your gifts can help turn death to life for a suffering person in our community and restore hope when all hope seems lost.


If you’d like to share this hope with someone in need, visit this page.

 

Mission In My Words: Rob Frazier

Mission In My Words: Rob Frazier

I have lived in Nashville for nearly 40 years, but only in the last 18 have I had an awareness of Nashville Rescue Mission.

In 2000, I retired from a full-time music career as a Christian recording artist, songwriter, and producer, went to seminary, and became a pastor at a local downtown church. It was there I first encountered the problem of homelessness in our city.

Through almost daily interaction with people coming to our church for food and other assistance, I began to grapple with the social problems that often produce homelessness: addiction, mental illness, lack of education, dysfunctional families, domestic abuse, poor social skills and work habits, spiritual poverty, and more.

I began to ask myself: who is addressing these issues and where do people go when they fall off the bottom rung of the economic ladder? The answer came up again and again—Nashville Rescue Mission. I began to learn more and started encouraging some of the people I met to consider the Mission, even taking some to the Mission when they were finally ready to make a move off the streets.

It was only after repeated interaction with Mission staff that I learned more about the additional aspects of their work. First, their Guest Services area provides the most basic requirements needed for survival, such as food and shelter, to those experiencing homelessness. Second, their Life Recovery Program, which is a one-year, faith-focused drug and alcohol rehabilitation program, is available to men and women battling addiction.

As God would lead me, I left my church post in 2013, and the following year became a Case Manager at the Mission working directly with homeless guests. I experienced both great challenges and wonderful breakthroughs, including reuniting a homeless man with his family whom he had not seen for nearly 30 years. They thought he was dead, but he was simply lost in a fog of mental illness and despair until, by God’s grace, we were able to intervene.

In late 2015, I become a Chaplain and Life Coach in the Life Recovery Program where I witnessed the miracle of restoration and God’s incredible power released in the lives of men who were finally willing to surrender to Him. The highlight of every month is graduation where the men who finish the first six months of the program are celebrated and have the opportunity to praise God for what He’s done, as well as the option of moving into Transitional Housing. To see, bitter, broken, and despairing men transformed—now beaming with life and gratitude as they stand before their families—always fills my heart with joy.

While ministry work has taken me elsewhere, I am still an active volunteer and supporter of the Mission and plan to remain involved as long as I live in Nashville. It is truly the place where hope lives.


Rob Frazier enjoyed a 25-year career in Christian music as a songwriter, artist, and producer before becoming a pastor, teacher, mentor, and creative coach. Initially coming to Nashville to play keyboard and guitar with the band Petra, he recorded and toured with them, then subsequently produced seven solo albums. Rob has over 200 recorded songs including ones by Kansas, Petra, Steve Camp, Ricky Skaggs, and more receiving multiple Dove and Grammy award nominations.

 

If you would like to learn more about what the Mission does, click here.