Anthony Mator

Beyond full bellies

Effective Compassion | Christian faith saturates a Nebraska homeless shelter's program
by Anthony Mator
Posted 9/02/06, 12:00 am

HASTINGS, Neb. - On a late Tuesday night, the sheriff rang the doorbell of Crossroads Center Rescue Mission. Jacob, a young vagrant with sad, blue eyes, unkempt beard, and sunburned nose, needed a place to stay. The staff offered a bed and clean clothes; he preferred to wear what he'd brought. They asked questions and tried to make small talk; he stared and said nothing.

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Housing starts

Effective Compassion | Charity helps families begin new lives in low-cost homes
by Anthony Mator
Posted 9/02/06, 12:00 am

FLINT, Mich. - Michael Moore buffs know Flint, Mich., as the setting of his 1989 documentary, Roger and Me, which criticized former General Motors CEO Roger Smith for closing several plants and cutting thousands of jobs in the birthplace of the world's largest automaker. Since the film's production, the Flint GM payroll has plummeted from 50,000 to 15,000, while the population has dropped from about 141,000 in 1900 to 124,000 in 2000.

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'God's house'

Effective Compassion | A return to order helps shelter reclaim lives
by Anthony Mator
Posted 9/02/06, 12:00 am

GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. - Five years ago, when Chico Daniels became director of the downtown Guiding Light Mission homeless shelter, drug dealers threw rocks at the windows to scare him back to California. For as long as anyone could remember, the street had been calling the shots, and 255 S. Division Avenue had a reputation as a gathering place for trouble. Dealers sold drugs in the restroom, brought prostitutes into the shelter, and did what they pleased without fear of punishment.

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