Las Cruces may be a small town, but the needs of the needy are anything but small. Members of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints were seen in mass numbers at the Mesilla Valley Community of Hope this Saturday for what they called, "A Day of Service."
The Community has several outreach services, which include a soup kitchen, health care clinic, and homeless child care. Recently, budget cuts have eliminated the establishment's ability to hire janitors or landscapers.
The volunteers were split into several groups to work around the Community. They worked in two shifts: 8am to 12pm and 1pm to 5pm. One hopeful Eagle Scout took charge of the St. Luke's Health Care Clinic. The clinic provides free limited health care to those who qualify. They also distribute hygiene kits on a monthly basis. St. Luke's used to suffer from stained walls, ripped furniture and an overall unpleasant atmosphere. When the morning shifts volunteers had finished, the walls were fresh, exciting colors, the furniture had been fixed and smiles were on the staff's faces.
Other areas reported similar transformations. In the Jardin de los Ninos, several volunteers refreshed the sand boxes. "It was a lot of fun," remarked Onate High School student.
At the Hengen house, one housewife was busy assembling ingredients to make frozen dinners. Her feelings of gratitude for her mother ignited her idea of service. The two enjoyed their time together immensely.
Such a mass gathering of volunteers may seem uncommon. However, it is not unusual to see several stalwart young men moving families into new homes. The Elder's Quorum president of the Mesilla Valley Ward is often spotted along the roads of Cruces, his father-in-law's trailer in tow.
A Day of Service? No. A Lifetime of Service. Thanks to all those who sacrifice so willingly to bear one another's burden and serve your fellowmen.