Good Shepherd Blog

50th Anniversary

In 2013, Good Shepherd Ministries celebrated 50 years of serving the “homeless and poor” in Toronto.

The anniversary year concluded in a mass celebrated by His Eminence Thomas Cardinal Collins at St. Paul’s Basilica.

As people gathered for lunch after the anniversary mass, Superior General Brother Justin shared advice given to the Brothers by their founder, Br. Mathias Barrett, when they first set out for Canada. Those words still ring true at Good Shepherd today.

Brothers:

As you embark on this new work of charity, never forget that the men (and possibly women too) who knock on your door in desperation and need are, in fact, your brothers and sisters. Always treat them with dignity and respect. Never, ever take them for granted. They are, warts and all, your companions and fellow citizens . . . travelers along the pathway of life, but hurting, mostly alone, often misunderstood and frequently shunned by others.

In dealing with people in need, do not attempt to evangelize or convert. Others can do that. Your task is simply to be a helping caring presence, and to be of service.

Never be satisfied with what is and never be afraid to be on the cutting edge; be creative in your work – wonderful things can happen if you dare to dream.

Always listen to your guests and visitors. They can tell you a lot about their needs and a lot about yourselves . . . if you care to listen.

Always be open, honest, and truly caring in your work and people will, in return, trust you with their lives. It’s a sacred trust. Never abuse such trust.

What has allowed Good Shepherd Ministries to stay faithful to that sacred trust for 50 years? It is the generous support and hard work of thousands of individuals and organizations.

Thank you to each and every one of you!


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