This is Our Community – by Sophia Torrijos

There is an emerging rhythm to things now. So much has changed over the past few months, but best practices are re-emerging in new processes. The community has been so patient and gracious with us. Everyone pitches in and helps. When someone sees something that needs doing, they just step up and do it without having to be asked to help.

One of the things that has emerged is that there is a rush when we open for the first hour or so, and then a steady stream of people in need of food until we close. Each week we try to simplify and edit to make the process as safe and anxiety free as possible, both for our community and for our volunteers.

As we got toward the end today, our closers stepped in and started doing the dirty work of clean up and disposal. One volunteer climbed on top of the cardboard trying to make room for just one more cartful. Another volunteer took out the garbage. Still another quietly mopped with great care. No one complained. These tasks aren’t seen as grunt work. Here, leaders mop. And all understood that it’s an honor to have an opportunity to serve. Today, thanks to everyone who supports us in so many ways, Despensa was able to provide food and a little hope to more than 120 families.

As the lights were shut down and the doors locked, the volunteers parted with, “Love you, buddy. Please, stay safe.” The reply of, “Love you too. See you next week?” And the reply of, “God willing.”

What we can control is how we value one another, and care for one another’s concerns. We can control our attitude and our behavior. So much beyond that is beyond our control right now. Today, we can love one another, and put the needs of others before our own. This is our community. This is our way.