Every weekday at 10:55 a.m. a general announcement is made over the intercom at The Ottawa Mission by our Chaplain, Greg Rodgers: “Chapel service begins in five minutes. Everyone is welcome.”
People staying at the shelter, and people who live in the community join together for this daily half hour of prayer, bible readings and song, and it’s always a special treat for staff and volunteers to hear music and singing voices coming from the chapel.
The Lenten season leading up to Easter is an especially important time of the year for those who attend chapel. This year there will be special services on Palm Sunday, Good Friday and Easter Sunday.
A lot of us observe Lent by making a personal sacrifice of some sort – like giving up special treats. For those who are homeless, hungry and hurting, sacrifice and suffering are constants in their lives, something they live with every day. And the strength they show in enduring many hardships, in always trying to make better lives for themselves, and in maintaining their faith throughout, is something we can all learn from – during Lent and all year round.
The season will culminate in a special celebration of the risen Lord on Monday, April 17th when staff and volunteers come together to serve 2700 special Easter meals – thanks to the generosity of our donors – to people who are hungry and alone. The gratitude of those who attend this celebration is something they carry with them in their hearts through Easter and beyond.