The Saint Louis Quaker meeting house is also a warming shelter in the winter for homeless folk. There is a community organization that coordinates churches in the area that provide this service. There are a lot of moving parts to the work: providing the space, cooking, cleaning, working with the local authorities. There are hundreds of people working every year to provide this service.
Our church has space for 40 people when the weather is severely cold. We move the benches out of the way and set up cots in the sanctuary, and it becomes their sanctuary for the night. In between cold nights, the cots and blankets and pillows are folded and stored at the north end of the sanctuary in a couple of big piles.
About a year ago, some of the Friends (members of the church are called Friends) hatched a plan to store the shelter supplies in the basement in the off season. They wired the basement with plentiful lighting and painted the dark wood white. They installed some industrial strength shelves that were donated by a member.
Last week, after worship, we moved the supplies down to the newly refurbished basement.
[Beloved readers-I have finally transitioned into my retired life of writing and working on hand picked sustainability projects. In honor of this, I am starting a new blog: Quaker Stylist. I will post both here and there for the next month or so, in the hopes of convincing my beloved readers to make the transition with me. I will leave my two previous blogs up for a few months, in case any readers want to make a trip down memory lane. Eventually, I will be taking them down, decluttering them from the blog sphere.]