TO THE EDITOR:
On Oct. 8, 2014, the bridge to Long Island in Boston Harbor was closed due to safety concerns. Within hours, nearly 700 men and women who had been staying in the Long Island Shelter were displaced.
In response, an interfaith coalition called Boston Religious Leaders for the Long Island Refugees was formed to support those who had previously called Long Island their home.
One thing the coalition heard from those who were displaced was that there was an urgent need for a warm, safe, welcoming place to be during the day.http://www.stpetersweston.org
In response, the coalition addressed this critical need by opening two temporary day warming shelters – one at Old South Church in Copley Square and one at Emmanuel Episcopal Church on Newbury Street. These shelters provide unhoused men and women a place to go where they are welcome, safe and warm.
In addition to serving coffee, tea, and snacks, they provide a place where homeless men and women can find community, support and rest.
Both of the clergy at St. Peter’s Episcopal Church in Weston have been actively involved in these efforts. The Rev. Stephen Voysey, rector of St. Peter’s, has been a member of the coalition, Boston Religious Leaders for the Long Island Refugees, since its beginnings in October.
The Rev. Christen Mills, assistant priest at St. Peter’s, was hired in January to be the site director of the Boston Warm @ Emmanuel Day Shelter. She serves in this capacity in addition to her work at St. Peter’s, where she focuses on ministry to children, youth and families.
Members of the parish have also become involved by donating goods, giving financial support, and signing up as volunteers.
To learn how you can join us in this important work, or to see a list of the most urgently needed donations, go online (https://bostonwarm.weebly.com).
Donations can be delivered to the office at St. Peter’s Church between 9 a.m. and 3 p.m. on Tuesday to Friday. – Rev. Stephen O. Voysey, rector, and Rev. Christen H. Mills, assistant for Christian formation, St. Peter’s Episcopal Church, Boston Post Road, Weston (www.stpetersweston.org)