Wednesday, January 30, 2008

Answered Prayers and serving opportunities

There are a lot of exciting things happening at Charm City, I can't believe how God is placing amazing people in my life and how he continues to cross my path with amazing I am meeting with Ms. Carter, she could very well be an HUGE answer to prayer as she's said she'd be willing to mentor and help a VERY special woman in my life. This woman begs for help every week, she's very sick, very pregnant and very much an addict. Ms. Carter works with addicts, woman who are H.I.V. positive and women who are lost, she's willing and able and an answer to a prayer I've been praying for my friend for a while. I am so excited about Ms. Carter and pray that my friend will be open to meeting her and attempting to get help.

Other exciting news, construction is going to happen this weekend for the Food Bank that'll be up and running at Charm City sometime in the very near future. The food bank is going to be opened with the help of World Class Cities Ministries ( and will be a part of their Can Thrive program. God has blessed us with contractors who are willing to donate their time and materials to help get us up and running, however there is still a need for three more people who would be willing to help with this project. These people would need to be willing to begin working at 7:30 a.m. this Saturday February 2nd and work through the late morning or early afternoon. Workers will help haul materials and trash in and out of the building. If you're interested in helping with this you can either contact myself at or Shaun Wilson at email .

Other opportunities to serve include the following dates:
February 20th Love night for Metro Kidz, we need people to help serve dinner that evening as well as help provide the meal, it's going to be a special night of serving our kids and showing them love, that they don't get on a regular basis.

March 5th From Junk to Jesus, Guest Speaker Mike Weber shares his testimony from Junk to Jesus with our Charm City community, we're going to have a cookie reception after his talk, so we need people who would be willing to provide cookies, help serve them and others who just might want to join us for an amazing guest speaker. Also needed that evening is someone to lead praise and worship for a few minutes at the beginning and possibly at the end.

March 8th Adopt-A-Block kickoff, we're going to take back the block surrounding the church. We'll meet at the church at 10:15 for prayer and briefing and then the event will be from 10:30-2 p.m. This is a good opportunity for families, small groups and individuals.

March 22nd Adopt-A-Block, we'll meet at the church at 10:15 for prayer and briefing and then the event will be from 10:30-2 p.m. This is a good opportunity for families, small groups and individuals.

June 21st Second Annual School's Out Block Party! Details to be announced!

If you're interested in serving or would like to know more about any of these events then please contact me at

Tuesday, January 22, 2008

Gym Night and Upcoming Events

This past weekend, I had a real chance to bond with my girls, we went to open gym night at Halethorpe Community Church and four of my girls rode with me, we had the opportunity to chat and get to know each other outside of our bible study setting, it was pretty much amazing! They braided my hair, we talked about school and college, families and life as an inner city kid. I fall more and more in love with these girls everyday!

Last Wednesday we had a Winter Beach Party, as soon as someone posts some pictures, I'll post some was a lot of fun! We played limbo, hula hooped and had a beach picnic dinner :)! Next week we're having Movie Night the teens are watching Amazing Grace and the Juniors are finishing up Akeelah and the Bee. Over the next month we're having Abe Lincoln visit, hosting love night and a few special days! I'm being ambitious and taking some of my girls to D.C.! That should be fun!!!

There's not much else going on, but there are somethings you can pray for:

1. Continued protection- there were 11 shootings in three days, it's been a mess of violence in our district.
2. For new volunteers, we've recruited a few!
3. Block Party Planning (we've picked a date)!
4. Guidance and wisdom for our leaders

Thursday, January 10, 2008

It's a warzone out there....

For the first time ever I had a hard time leaving my "work" at work last night. My heart was broken to the point I couldn't even think without bursting into tears, I came home and when I was alone in a quiet place, I just begged God to calm my heart but the tears wouldn't stop coming, there has been a shooting every night this week in our district and it's really hitting close to home. Last night, I had planned to talk to the girls about disrespect, and I did to a point, but God lead my heart in another direction. I wanted to know more about the lives my girls live, I wanted to know what they were thinking about whats going on in their neighborhood, how they coped, what they were thinking. I got truth, honesty, real honest from the heart answers from these girls. Some of their responses included:

"It's like a war zone out there..."
"The world is ending..."
"I don't think I'll live to be 16..."
"I just bow my head and hope to goodness they don't kill me..."

I asked about the gang violence and found out that one of my girls has been and continues to be in gang fights, she's been hurt pretty badly, which is why she's stopped coming to Metro Kidz, I found out that the girls are harassed on a regular basis to join gangs and when they tell them their not interested they hope to walk away alive.

I found out that there have been time after time when the knock at the door at 3 a.m. is homicide investigating a murder on the block. That they have to concentrate at school while rival gangs are dukin' it out in the hallway.

I knew in my heart this stuff was all real, but it didn't become 100% real to me until I heard the fear in my kids voices. Even the boys, last night there was a shooting in the neighborhood while we were signing kids in and so I drove a lot of the kids home, one of the boys said, "Miss Colleen, thanks for driving me home, I was scared..." this kid is one of the toughest kids who comes to Metro Kidz, it broke my heart that a "tough" had to admit his fear and while I knew it was a good still hurt. It hurt to watch these kids finally open up...but this is what I have been praying for. I just want to know why I am so blessed I get to come home to a safe quiet neighborhood everynight and these kids suffer...go to sleep fearing whether or not their going to make it past the bus stop in the morning.

I told the girls last night that the four walls we were in, was a place where they could let it all out, share whatever was on their heart, get angry, pray, be happy etc. And it felt like they'd forgotten I was there...and just let it all come out, we prayed for their friends...for the city, they begged for prayer for their neighborhoods, their schools. It was the saddest night of my Metro Kidz experience, but at the same time we hit a spot where I think we're all on the same page and I have 100% gained their trust. They were telling me about their families, what their moms and dads do, about the new gang that is about to flood Baltimore and a multitude of other things.

Last night for the first, I couldn't help but ask God why, why lord did you place ME a place where I get to pick bullet casings off the ground like it's not a big deal, in a place where I get to spend the majority of my days hanging out with people who are high, drunk or both, people who have no idea how they got to this place, kids who suffer day after day, momma's who sell their bodies to put food on the table, daddies who deal drugs to pay the bills...I've reached the tough point in my job, the one where I've been longing to be, out of my comfort I have to just pray that God can keep me strong in this war zone...

So as you can imagine there are some things you can pray for:

*The kids, they need all the prayer they can get at this point
*The neighborhood it truly has turned into a war zone
*Pastor Mike and all of us, that we can continue to listen to God's wisdom and guidance and that we'll continue to have the umbrella of God over the church
*That the girls will continue to feel like I am a safe person that they can talk too
*Monday some of the girls are coming to study with me for exams, I want that time to be a time of not only studying, but relationship that I can deepen my relationship with them.

Thanks friends for continuing to support me in this tough endeavor!

Monday, January 7, 2008

Exciting Things Ahead

Wow, I can't believe it's 2008! So I've been spending a lot of quality time hanging out with God and He's been doing a mighty work in my heart about somethings that need to happen this year, one of them is we need to get Adopt-A-Block off the ground, so on March 8th we're having an adopt-a-block kick off "party"/day! I'm planning to invite tons of people to join as we rock this neighborhood, meeting neighbors, praying and cleaning the blocks. More details will be posted as we get closer to the date :)!

Also the block party is going to be June 21st this year, if you came last year you know how exciting it was, it's going to be just as fun this year :)! I hope you'll join us.

I wish I had more to post, but we've been getting back to normal since the holidays, so this week is finally our kick off the new year week and I'll have lots to post!

Thanks friends-