Our Christmas appeal: Pray for God’s Plan
What is your plan? How are you going to survive? I would ask while serving soup to the poor, or washing dishes at every Catholic Worker house, I visited across the country a few years ago. Many of the workers, paid nothing, living in community, busy everyday from a schedule of service, would run out of money, and I would ask again—what is your plan? Most of them would answer me the exact same way. . . . Pray. Pray?!?
I want long plans, charts, and security that I would have the enough to feed the families every week that call us for help, much less enough to pay rent. So as we are struggle to continue to feed our families, do our work of social justice, and we are not taking in enough to survive for long— and there are now 3 full time volunteers and a house full of people, and dozens of families that are concerned for our continued existence, and asking for a plan. I remember this advice— pray.
The Christmas story is one of human plans going wrong. Joseph plan is derailed as he marries this woman that is now pregnant; Herod plan to destroy the prophetic liberator of the poor is foiled. Plan to get a hotel room is not working.
A new plan is born, and the Jesus plan is a plan that we our constantly not in control of. Constantly when all seems lost, when all the plans of life seem to fail, when Joseph and Marry are cast out into a manger, when our families we serve are left without jobs, injured, and in shacks and trailers—we pray and sometimes god’s plan comes into view with gifts and grace. So it is now that I pray that we can be the grace in their lives. I pray we can be the part of God’s plan for them. You can be their food, their support, you can be their hope. You can be part of this plan. I pray that you are.
December 17th, 2020
“To everything there is a season, A time for every purpose under heaven: A time to be born, And a time to die …” — Ecclesiastes 3:1 “Surrender to what is dying, and become attentive to what is emerging.” — … Continue reading
December 27th, 2019
After being invited to Barcelona, Spain this fall for a chaotic tour of book talks, TV appearances, and radio interviews, I needed a place to recover from all the activity. And one of the greatest realizations of my life has … Continue reading
December 24th, 2018
As many of you know, I am a social justice geek. I compulsively read and think about social movements, and have been doing this for a long time, and am now considered a specialist in the field commonly referred to … Continue reading
January 18th, 2018
The election of Trump was like somebody threw a political bomb into the middle of a crowded room. For undocumented people, it meant fear of losing DACA and being deported. For labor unions and the working poor, it meant losing … Continue reading
January 9th, 2017
Many have asked how I am feeling after Trump was elected to President of the US. The largest natural disaster in my lifetime just hit my community. It reminds me of both the day after my father died in my … Continue reading
December 31st, 2014
Dear Friends, I started the Center for the Working Poor in 2006. I donated all my money and my car, and slept on the floor of my shared, cramped apartment with our first full time volunteer, Clayton Perry. We ate … Continue reading
December 17th, 2012
The Center for the Working Poor, (aka the Burning Bush Community), continues to share in the wonderful mix of serving the poor, communal living, prayer and meditation, and nonviolent movement organizing that distinguishes our beautiful home. In addition to delivering … Continue reading
December 15th, 2011
By Paul Engler Every once in a while, a rare and special moment comes when you realize that you are doing more than turning out for just another protest. Instead, you realize that you are in the middle of true … Continue reading