Shepherd's Heart Ministry
Shepherd’s Heart is a ministry devoted to providing food, clothes, shower, first aid, laundry service and prayers to the homeless. It also will provide limited shelter during periods of intense cold (below freezing) to women and children who have nowhere else to turn.
As Christians, Shepherd's Heart is committed to worship in "spirit and truth." By being so, Shepherd's Heart takes it upon themselves to feed the poor, the homeless and the addicted, with food for the body, but most importantly, food for the soul. They provide church service every Sunday evening as well as a meal for those in need. They provide showers, wash clothes and a meal every weekday morning in the drop-in center. They also provide transitional housing for homeless veterans. This congregation is committed to help those less fortunate survive the streets of Pittsburgh with their Christian hearts. Our students lend a helping hand and a listening ear to patrons of the ministry once a week and often attend prayer services with them. Through this interaction, our students are finding out that, contrary to popular opinion, homeless people are often there due to economic hardship and not by choice.
Duquesne students visited every Sunday from January 2011 until April 2011.
“We were hoping to be able to offer some comforting company to the people and a helping hand to the shelter; as it turns out, the people there have been teaching us a lot more than we have been teaching them. [We] learned to never judge a book by its cover. Everyone needs someone to talk to, to get things off their chest and just discuss how their day went, and that’s what we’re there to do. Listening is a major part of this project; in fact, that’s what we do most of the time. Focusing on our listening skills at this ministry allows us to recognize our listening faults.”
— Kristen Coyne
Service learning involves the rewards of leadership and to encourage others to do likewise by being a role model. It also impacted our life and values by showing us how underprivileged people are and how blessed we are for the lives we have. In that sense, we have so much; we should give back, especially as Christians, which Shepherd's heart has re-enforced. Volunteering at Shepherd's heart has sharpened our listening skills as well as our people skills. It was a challenge trying to converse with people of different backgrounds at first, but then became easier.
- Alyssa Earlywine