Welcoming the Stranger

Program 262 • 29 mins


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Free Podcast Available

This Program was originally presented as part of our special series, ‘The Spiritual Care Podcast’. You can hear the full series free at: The Spiritual Care Podcast

We visit a shelter at Seattle’s Mission for a rich exchange with a formerly homeless man who feels the spiritual care he received from mental health workers helped him develop the ability to transition into housing. We hear from a social worker, Larry Clum, who explores what it means to companion homeless people, without trying to “fix” their problem. Also, several chaplains reflect in-depth on the experience of connecting with people who are facing challenges related to mental health, addiction and homelessness. Included are comments by Kae Eaton of the Mental Health Chaplaincy, Rev. Jonathan Neufeld, community minister at Seattle Mennonite Church, and Rev. Beverly Hartz, with the Veterans Administration Puget Sound Health Care system.

Most of us, are lucky enough to have many things that ground us into our identity. You know, our families, our friends, our vocations, our jobs, our homes. And when we find people that have severed ties with those grounding moments, they often lose themselves in the process too. So if we can look at them not as the other, but as ourselves, if I can see myself in you, then we start to create a reality actually for both of us. It’s not a one-way street; it’s a gift that travels in both directions.”

—Reverend Beverly Hartz, Veterans Administration Peuget Sound Healthcare System, Seattle, WA

David Freudberg with ‘TY’ and social worker Larry Clum

(L-R) Mental Health Chaplaincy associates: Larry Clum, Rev. Beverly Hartz, Kae Eaton, Rev. Jonathan Neufeld


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