Celebrating Foundations Life Recovery Graduates!!

In July we were honored to be able to celebrate three men who graduated from our Foundations Life Recovery program!

Join us in congratulating Odell, Sean and Robert on their big accomplishment!!

Foundations Life Recovery is a 13-month residential program where guys seek help and recovery from addictions, personal issues, and destructive choices. The men attend classes, chapel, and counseling sessions to help them overcome the spiritual and personal obstacles that hindered their ability to live a life of purpose.

We asked each of our graduates to write down a little something about what brought them to The Hope Center, their journey to recovery, and what the future holds for them. These are their words:

ROBERT HARE

“I grew up in Western Maryland. I got saved at 10 or 12 years old at the Church of God in Cumberland, Maryland.

I became a truck driver, fell on hard times, and ended up homeless in Hagerstown. I came to The Hope Center, got into their Christian program (Foundations Life Recovery) to try to get back in touch with God.

I got through the program and now I am going to church again and I have God in my life.

I am planning to find work and get my life back together and move on with my life.

I keep thinking abot Philippians 4:13 which says, ‘I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me.'”

SEAN FANTONE

“While I have had a relationship with my Lord and Savior all my life, in my later years I fell into the sins of pride, anger, lust, and deceit. Since coming to The Hope Center, thanks to the staff of people that God put here to help men, I have recognized my sins and have spent many hours praying and repenting.

My experiences here, and the program classes and chapel services, have brought me much closer to Jesus. I now walk a more humble path, choosing forgiveness and understanding, as Jesus would do.

My walk with God during my studies in the Foundations Life Recovery program has prepared me to walk with Him moving forward to living the next chapter in my life.”

ODELL JAMES

“I’m from East Port, Maryland. I came to The Hope Center because of a housing situation. I stayed to learn more about our Lord and Saviro, to find out who He really is.

I arrived in January, 2021 after graduating from the Wells House after a lengthy prison sentence. Due to the Covid-19 pandemic, I was released to the Well House program where I graduated. After that, I had housing issues so I was given a choice to go to REACH or The Hope Center. I was told by a person who worked at REACH that The Hope Center would be a better fit for me.

Once I came to The Hope Center I found myself in a position to get some answers to some questions I had about Jesus. The best way to get a full understanding was to join the program, so that’s what I did.

My favorite verse: Jeremiah 17:9 – “The hear is deceitful above all things, and desperately wicked, who can know it?’ That was the first verse I memorized here.

My future plans aer to continue my walk with God and stay out of trouble, and contribute to society and find a job I can be proud of.”

We are so incredibly proud of these 3 men! They have worked so hard to get their lives back on track and have grown so much closer to God during this process of recovery. They’ve faced many challenges on their road to recovery but they’ve stayed the course and kept their focus on God and are now celebrating their success!

Please keep Odell, Sean, and Robert in your prayers as they move forward and start to re-establish themselves into society. Their life of recovery is just beginning and the prayer support of God’s people is so important to their long-term success.

Also, please pray for the men who are currently in our Foundations Life Recovery program and those who will eventually join it. The challenges are great and victory is hard earned but knowing that there’s a cheering section supporting them, loving them, and praying for them helps to make a huge difference! Please continue to pray for our Foundations Life Recovery program as it changes the lives of the men who are a part of it.

And for each of you who support The Hope Center: thank you! Your support, whether financial, through donations of food or gently used items, volunteer work, or your prayers, have been a part of the success of these men. You played a major role in helping provide housing, comfort, love, and hope to these men and thousands of men who enter The Hope Center each year. While these men aren’t able to thank each of you, please know that they are eternally grateful for your support!

So one more time, join us in congratulating Odell, Sean, and Robert for their success!!

To learn more about Foundations Life Recovery please visit hagerstownhopecenter.com/foundations

Community Grocery Giveaway Draws Crowd!

We had another huge turnout at our Community Grocery Giveaway on Sunday! from 2-4pm on Sunday, June 5th, the Trinity Center was bustling with guests doing a little complimentary grocery shopping.

Our Community Grocery Giveaway is a free food event to help provide grocery assistance to anyone in the community. With food prices rising and inflation taking its toll, many people are struggling to keep their pantries stocked and their families fed. Our Community Grocery Giveaway helped relieve some of the pressure for these families and individuals.

We provided a wide assortment of all sorts of non-perishable items like cereal, ramen, pasta, canned vegetables, boxed dinners, mac & cheese, beans, canned meat, and more.

We are so thankful to be able to help fight hunger in our community and make sure that no one is dealing with food insecurity. We noticed an increase in senior citizens who participated in the event due to rising prices vs their fixed income. These are definitely challenging times for many and we’re happy to be able to provide assistance.

And we’re able to help so many every month because of our wonderful group of supporters like you! Our Community Grocery Giveaways are possible because of the generous support of our friends who donate so much food each month! Not only are we able to host these grocery events every quarter but we’re serving multiple meals a day to the community and providing food bags every month to anyone in need. God continues to bless our pantry and provide us with the needed food to provide for our neighbors in need. It’s truly nothing short of a miracle how our pantry stays stocked for all the ways we help others. We thank God for everyone who has partnered with us to care for others in their time of need.

There were so many grateful people at our Community Grocery Giveaway. Your donations have helped to make a huge impact on your community – and not just in providing food but also providing hope and showing God’s love! Thank you for caring and sharing!

We also want to give a big THANK YOU to all the volunteers who gave time on Sunday afternoon to help make sure this event was so successful! Thank you so much for your kind and compassionate spirit and giving of your free time to care for the community!! We appreciate you all so much!

If you’d like to learn more about donating food and supporting our food programs then visit hagerstownhopecenter.com/pantry.

If you, or someone you know, is in need of grocery assistance please call us at 301.739.1165 to request a food bag.

Washington County Gives Has Begun! Give Online Today!!

Washington County Gives is a unique day of online giving to benefit non-profits in the area. From midnight until 11:59pm on May 10th you can join others in the area in support of The Hope Center by donating during WCG ’22!

We’re currently raising support for new tables and chairs for our newly expanded dining room. In 2020-2021 we renovated and expanded our food services area. The construction project more than doubled the space which allows us to feed more people daily. But with the larger space we need more tables and chairs for our guests.

Your donation during WCG will help us purchase the new furniture that will allow us to feed more men, women, and children in the area who are hungry and food insecure.

To donate click here: https://www.washingtoncountygives.org/organizations/the-hope-center-661b283e-b24d-4ea7-8fca-8d5e84104eaf or go to hagerstownhopecenter.com/wcg for a quick link to our donation page for this fundraiser.

And after you give don’t forget to get on Facebook and other social media to encourage your friends and family to join you in giving!

Thank you for your support during Washington County Gives and your continued support of this ministry to those in need in our community! For 67 years we’ve been able to help thousands of neighbors in need thanks to the generous support of friends like you!

Your Used Items Help Change Lives!

Many of you have been faithfully donating your gently used items to The Hope Center for years upon years. From clothing for the whole family, to purses, jewelry, toys, coats, shoes, books, housewares, furniture, and basically anything you can think of, our Donation Center has been a hub of activity sorting through all these wonderful donated items. Once the items are sorted and priced they go to one of our two Thrift Stores in the area where shoppers looking for great deals find quality used items without breaking their budget. Some of our neediest neighbors can even go “shopping” for items for free through our Community Assistance voucher program.

But the sales from items donated play a much larger role in our ministry. The money generated from sales of these items help to pay the bills for The Hope Center to keep our facilities open 24/7 and our programs and services free for our neighbors in need!

So we are beyond thankful and appreciative for all the items donated by each of you. The value of your donated items cannot truly be measured on earth. Your donated shirts, plates, VHS tapes, couches, etc. have helped thousands of people in so many life saving ways since 1955. Thank you for caring and sharing with your community!

As you prepare to donate your gently used items in the future please note that our Donation Center dock is CLOSED every Wednesday and Sunday along with all major holidays.

Our Donation Center dock is located at the back of our parking lot at 215 W. Church St. We will gladly accept your gently used items during our operating hours. For more info about donations please visithagerstownhopecenter.com/in-kind-gifts

We’re always looking for volunteers to help sort and price donated items in our Donation Center sorting room. If you’ve got some free time during the week and are interested in helping please call us at 301.739.1165 or email volunteer@hagerstownhopecenter.com.

Also, if you live in the Hagerstown area and have furniture to donate please call us at 301.739.1165 to schedule a pickup.

Also, we’re still hiring a truck driver! If you, or someone you know, has some extra time during the week and would like some extra income then please contact us immediately. To learn more about this job please http://visithagerstownhopecenter.com/employment…

Join The Hope Center Family!

We’re hiring!! We’ve got four part-time positions open and we’re looking for a few wonderful people to join our family.

The four part-time positions are: Donation Center/Thrift Store Associate (Hagerstown location), Chaplain, Cook, and Truck Driver.

Any of these positions are great for retirees or anyone looking for something a little extra to do whilst helping to make a difference in the community!

To learn more about each of these positions please visit https://www.hagerstownhopecenter.com/employment-opportunities or email info@hagerstownhopecenter.com. To speak to someone about our job openings please call us at 301.739.1165.

Please spread the word by sharing our posts on FB and telling your friends & family. Thank you!

Happy Birthday, Troy!

The beginning of each month we celebrate the birthdays of guys who are a part of our Foundations Life Recovery residential program. This month we’re celebrating Troy who has a birthday on July 9th. Troy got his very own birthday cake thanks to our friend, Stormy, who bakes a cake each month for our birthday fellas.

Troy, originally from Baltimore, is one of our new residents. He joined the program in March ’21 and is working towards his graduation in the spring of 2022. Troy came seeking help dealing with drug abuse and homelessness.

Any time we can celebrate a birthday with our residents is very special to us. But for Troy this was a special moment as well. With tears in his eyes Troy told us that this was the first time in many years that anyone had sang ‘happy birthday’ to him.

And this is why we’re here. To bring hope – even if it’s in the form of a silly birthday song – to anyone who walks into our doors seeking help and refuge. We’re so thankful for Troy and being a part of a celebration of another year of life for this incredible man.

Please pray for Troy and the other men in our Foundations Life Recovery program. It’s not easy seeking help and even more difficult following through but God is great and has wonderful things planned for these men so please keep all of them in your prayers. God is doing amazing things in the lives of these men so continue to pray for them and encourage them to keep up the good fight.

Thank you to each of you who donate and volunteer. You are a part of Troy’s celebration. Because of generous and kind people like you Troy is here celebrating another birthday and optimistic about so many more birthdays in the future. Thank you for partnering with us to help wonderful people like Troy!

If you’d like to learn more about our Foundations Life Recovery program please click here: Foundations | hagerstownhopecenter

We’re Hiring! Join Our Team and Help Make a Difference!

We’ve got a few job openings currently! If you or someone you know is looking for part-time work or trying to find a way to get involved then keep reading!

All current job openings are part-time. The positions available are Chaplain, Cook, Driver (box truck for donation pickups), Deskman, and Cashier/Sorter.

If you’re retired, looking for some additional income, or want to get involved in a ministry and would like more info about any of these positions then please click here: EMPLOYMENT OPPORTUNITIES | hagerstownhopecenter

If you’d like to speak to someone about any of these job postings please call 301.739.1165 or email info@hagerstownhopecenter.com.

And please spread the word to your friends, family, church and others to help us quickly fill these positions. Thank you! Also, if you’re unable to apply but would like to volunteer please call 301.739.1165 or email volunteer@hagerstownhopecenter.com.

Support our Kitchen Expansion Project!

To learn about our expansion project and all things happening at The Hope Center please visit http://www.hagerstownhopecenter.com.

Our renovation & expansion project is moving right along! Thanks to some great weather this fall, and a great construction team, we are currently on schedule. The project will hopefully be completed by March 2021.

Once completed the expansion will give our kitchen staff & volunteers a bigger, more efficient kitchen to prepare and serve meals. It will also increase the seating capacity of our dining room allowing us to safely feed more people. And it will triple the size of our pantry allowing us more space to store food for our daily meals and our food bag program for the community.

We are currently raising support to repay the construction loans for this project. To learn more about our construction project and to donate please visit Online Giving | hagerstownhopecenter

Give Hope… and Pancakes!

It’s a new month so we have a new Pantry Item of the Month!

This January we’re asking for donations of pancake mix & syrup. We’ll gladly accept any brand, flavor, or size – including bulk size – of mix & syrup.

During these cold winter months a delicious pancake breakfast for our residents & guests is always welcomed! And we’ll share these items with our neighbors in need when they come for food bags this winter season.

To donate in person please drop off items to our Administrative Office (parking lot located at 215 W. Church St) during business hours M-F from 8:15am – 4pm (office is closed 11:30am – 12:15pm for lunch). If those hours don’t work for you then please call us at 301.739.1165 or email info@hagerstownhopecenter.com to schedule a time that suits.

If you’re shopping from your favorite online retailer please use 125 N. Prospect St, Hagerstown, MD 21740 as our delivery address. And remember, when you shop at Amazon use AmazonSmile (smile.amazon.com) and select ‘The Hope Center at Hagerstown Rescue Mission’ as your charitable organization. Amazon will donate a portion of your order to our organization!

To learn more about our food services or to get more info about all the programs and services at The Hope Center please visit http://www.hagerstownhopecenter.com.

Thank you for caring & sharing with your community! We truly appreciate every donation from our generous supporters!

In Memoriam

2020 has been an absolutely difficult year for all of us but November dealt The Hope Center family a painful blow with the sudden passing of Danny Sluss and Reggie Carroll.

Danny graduated from Foundations Life Recovery, our 13-month rehabilitation program, in February of this year and was doing great in his new life. After graduating Danny had gotten his own place and had gotten a job at FedEx. He was also working to get his license again, which was one of his post-graduation goals he set for himself. Unfortunately, Danny passed away unexpectedly in his hometown in Delaware.

Reggie was a current resident in our Foundations program who contracted COVID-19 and passed away during his recovery from the virus. Reggie came to us from DC to seek help with his addictions. While in the program he worked in our kitchen and was a deskman during the day. Reggie was so close to graduating from the program and was so excited to achieve his goal of completing the program and being free from his addictions.

If you had the pleasure of meeting or working with either of these men you would know how kind, friendly, helpful, and genuine they were. It was a delight to know both of them and to have been able to be a part of their victory story.

Please pray for the families and loved ones of each of these men. Our hearts are broken and we know their families are hurting as well.

The passing of each of these men is tragic in its own way, but we can rejoice in knowing that both are in the protective arms of their Savior now. When these precious men left this earth they were instantly welcomed into their eternal home. Danny & Reggie both had a personal relationship with Christ and we take comfort in knowing that they are both at peace now.

Please remember to pray for the men currently enrolled in Foundations, all of our graduates, and for the future men who will be coming to seek help. This is not an easy fight during the program nor any easier after graduation. The stakes are high and Satan knows exactly how to destroy. Please continue to pray for strength and power for the guys who’ve had victory in Christ. Each day is a battle and we so sincerely pray for victory for our graduates as they venture back into their world.

Also remember to pray for the vulnerable in our society and those who are currently physically fighting COVID-19. For some of us it’s not a big deal but for others it’s a life & death situation. Please remember these vulnerable and valuable people and wear a mask to help protect them from this deadly virus. And join us in praying that the vaccine works and can help us protect our friends and family from the virus.

As we say our farewells to Danny and Reggie we’re reminded about the one fact of each of these men that matters so deeply – they had found their victory in Christ! This song has always felt like an anthem or fight song for the Church but now, more than ever, it has such a powerful message about the lives of these two precious men, Danny & Reggie:

“I heard an old, old story, how a Savior came from glory
How He gave His life on Calvary to save a wretch like me
I heard about His groaning, of His precious blood’s atoning
Then I repented of my sins and won the victory

Oh victory in Jesus, my Savior forever
He sought me and bought me with His redeeming blood
He loved me ‘ere I knew Him and all my love is due Him
He plunged me to victory beneath the cleansing flood

I heard about His healing, of His cleansing power revealing
How He made the lame to walk again and ’caused the blind to see
And then I cried, “Dear Jesus, come and heal my broken spirit”
And somehow Jesus came and brought to me the victory

I heard about a mansion He has built for me in glory.
And I heard about the streets of gold beyond the crystal sea;
About the angels singing, and the old redemption story,
And some sweet day I’ll sing up there
The song of victory
.

Oh victory in Jesus, my Savior forever
He sought me and He bought me with His redeeming blood
He loved me ‘ere I knew Him and all my love is due Him
He plunged me to victory beneath the cleansing flood”