Volunteer takes gospel to heart

Anne-Maria on outreach

Matthew 25:35-36 tells us “I was hungry and you fed me, I was thirsty and you gave me drink. I was a stranger and you welcomed me, sick and you visited me, in prison and you came to see me.

One of Ipswich’s volunteers has really taken this to heart. Anne-Maria has been a Rosies volunteer since the branch was formed back in 2012. She is a Friday night outreach regular, as well as helping out with other outreaches when needed. As soon as an outreach commences, Anne-Maria is out there welcoming patrons, catching up on what is happening in their lives, and making sure they have something to eat or drink, or blankets and toiletries if that is what they need. For those too proud to ask for anything, she will quietly figure out what they need and softly convince them to accept assistance.

Even though Anne-Maria was regularly volunteering with us, she didn’t feel like she was doing enough, so she worked with a group of ladies to provide meals to the homeless and others struggling on Monday nights. More recently Anne-Maria has been working with St Pauls and other groups to provide end-of-day bakery items to our regular patrons.

But that still leaves a couple of areas from Matthew’s gospel not covered! If you are sick and heading into Ipswich Hospital, or going to visit those there, you are likely to run into Anne-Maria at the welcome desk. With a smile and greeting she will make sure that you feel more at ease at being there and get to where you need to go.

And for those going through the court system, Anne-Maria was there as part of the court support network. Which courtroom? What am I supposed to do? I need help! Is there someone I can just talk to? Anne-Maria was there to help with those questions to try and make the court experience a little less traumatic.