This winter we have a regular ministry of bringing warmth and comfort to the homeless of Nashville. We are partnering with the Room in the Inn ministry to house six people in our church building twice-monthly through the coldest of winter months, January through the end of March 2017. With this ministry, Calvary Chapel’s calling to the Acts 2:42 model, “And they continued steadfastly in the apostles’ doctrine and fellowship, in the breaking of bread, and in prayer,” will be extended outwards to others in the name of Jesus Christ!
We have many opportunities for everyone to serve, from meal preparation to overnight shelter monitor.
If you are interested in being a part of this work, please contact Glenn Greer at firstname.lastname@example.org or call the church office at 615-851-3088.
Our upcoming Hosting nights for 2017/18 are all on Sundays: January 7, January 21, February 4, February 18, March 4 and March 18.
- people to set up sleeping needs for our guest
- people to prepare food
- people to serve food
- drivers (to and from to pickup our guest)
- two people per night to sleep over
- people to cleanup after our guest leave
- people to prepare lunches for our guest to take with them
How it Works:
Calvary Chapel volunteers pick up our guests at the Room in the Inn downtown site with our church van and bring them back to our facility. In the meantime, other volunteers begin setting up sleeping arrangements and preparing to serve dinner at the church. The men will arrive around 6:30 PM, and we will welcome our guests upon arrival, just as we would someone into our own home.
Our guests will be shown their sleeping area and allowed to position their belongings at their bedding area. We will brief our guests on the agenda for the night and any guidelines and rules. There may be a short devotion or prayer before being directed to the dining area.
Dinner is served to our guests while we all enjoy conversation around the table. Once dinner has wrapped up, a few of our Calvary Chapel men will stay overnight with our guests.
Preparing and Serving Dinner
Dinners need to be prepared and ready to serve by 6:15 PM. It may be that you may not be able to drive to church but are willing to prepare a portion of the meal – we are happy to make arrangements to have it picked up and delivered to the church.
The men will arrive around 6:30 PM, and dinner will be plated in the kitchen and then served to our guests in the Fellowship Hall. We serve both our guests and other volunteers who are there for fellowship. Throughout dinner, volunteers will offer seconds and drink refills. We encourage dessert to be served separately from dinner so the evening does not feel rushed. Decaf coffee and water pitchers are available in the kitchen. Plates, cups, and utensils are available in the Fellowship Hall Kitchen. One of our leadership team members with Room in the Inn will meet you in the kitchen to help you with everything.
Staying and Helping Overnight
This role is so important to our evenings and has the biggest relational opportunity with our guests. Volunteers should arrive to the church by 6:00 PM or earlier, so the men may meet you when they arrive. Please bring a sleeping bag and pillow, and wear comfortable clothing for sleeping. We will have air mattresses or cots for you to sleep on, and you are welcome to bring anything you need to be comfortable for the evening.
In the morning, we encourage you to enjoy breakfast with the men before they leave at 5:30 AM. You will also help with cleanup, which includes helping the men break down their bedding and maybe dining tables. You will be at the church until around 6:15 AM that morning. There are no showers at the church – so you should allow time to return home to get fully ready for your day.
Preparing and Serving Breakfast
Volunteers are welcome to use the kitchen at church to prepare breakfast, or a pre-made breakfast casserole from home is also a great way to start the day! We have several options in foods to be prepared for breakfast and can share these with our volunteers. Our guests will be on a tight schedule in the mornings. We will wake them around 4:45 AM and serve breakfast to them as our van will need to leave the church at around 5:30 AM in order to get them back to the Room In The Inn. When they arrive at the Room In The Inn, they obtain a ticket that allows them another night’s stay at a participating church. Others have jobs that they must get to. We want to provide good breakfasts to make sure our guests start the day in a good manner.
Q) Is it safe to host a group of homeless men?
A) Yes! Room in the Inn screens the guests who will be joining us. They have been given instructions and guidelines by Room in the Inn personnel. Should there be any concern, they will not allow them to come. The men attending see this opportunity as a privilege and know that should they become belligerent or cause harm, they may not participate again. With this, you will find that the men are thankful, talkative, nice, funny…much like when you get your own family together.
Q) Are children allowed?
A) Absolutely! children are very welcomed by our Room in the Inn guests. It’s a good learning experience for our children. If your children are old enough, they make great servers too.
Q) I am rather skeptical – can one night really change a homeless man’s life?
A) Well, one night is probably not going to solve the problems that have our guests in a homeless situation. However, one night can be lifesaving on a freezing night. It also gives us an opportunity to be Jesus to these men by offering a warm meal and our Calvary Chapel hospitality. Further, the multitude of programs and daily support which the campus downtown for Room in the Inn offers on a daily basis are proven to change the circumstances of many and lead to them toward no longer being homeless. It may well change your life as Christ lives and ministers through you.