Looking at the entrance of our Emergency Shelter, Abdul is reminded of what he went through to get where he is today, serving as our Program Coordinator. He can relate to the perils and pain of being homeless and addicted… After all, he’s walked through that same door. Abdul was raised in a middle-class home by parents who wanted the best for him, but there was a dark side to his childhood: abuse at the hands of a sibling. “It was never talked about, and that put me into a terrible place of being out of touch with my own feelings,” he shares. Shame followed Abdul into adulthood, but he kept it hidden. In college, he was introduced to drugs – a welcome escape. Later, he helped create a beautiful family of his own, but he couldn’t stop using. The first time Abdul came to the Mission, he converted to Christianity. “It was in my mind, but not my heart,” he admits. Without a strong foundation, his faith faltered, and he eventually relapsed.
As Abdul’s addiction continued, his behaviors became more self-destructive – his marriage fell apart, and he landed in prison. There, in the midst of fear and loneliness, he prayed, “Lord, please get me through this day.” It worked, every day, and he began to understand Christ’s love. “This is how God works. None of this would have happened without Him in my heart.” After his release, Abdul’s parole officer led him to the Mission. “At first, I was ashamed,” he shares. “But care, love and compassion were all around me.” Abdul completed the Parker House Residential Aftercare Program for the second time with a stronger, Christ-centered support network for continued recovery. Now, with a dream job at the Mission, he shares his own experience, strength and hope with men who are hungry and hurting like he once was. Abdul has hope this Christmas – and he wants to thank YOU for supporting his journey toward a new life. “Faith guided me here to this wonderful place of second chances, and I’m so grateful.”