06 Jul

Many think of the homeless the way I found them in the early 1960’s. My church sent several of us teens to Detroit’s Skid Row to see the effect of alcoholism first hand. It was a bright, sunny day, yet as we walked the street, it seemed like a darkness hung over everything. There were only three kinds of buildings, bars, pawn shops, and abandoned buildings, their windows busted out and their floors littered with broken glass and beer bottles indicating that the homeless often sought shelter there from the rain and the cold. Some people wandered aimlessly while others slept, curled up in doorways and alleys. A scattering of patrons wandered in and out of the bars, catching a few drinks with friends before heading elsewhere. As we neared the end of the street, we found a large old building, a bright Salvation Army shield hung over the door. Inside we were met by a small gray haired lady, her bright blue officer’s uniform a welcome sight to those we had seen. She led us to the chapel where she led us in a couple songs including the Army’s favorite which begins, “Rescue the perishing, care for the dying, snatch them in pity from sin and the grave”.



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