Through Christ, all things are possible. (Philippians 4:13). That includes expecting miracles during the third annual Sojourner House women’s retreat from 9 a.m. to noon Saturday, November 16 at Shadyside Presbyterian Church. Located in eastern Pittsburgh, Sojourner House is a women’s substance abuse rehabilitation and treatment center established in 1991. It provides love, shelter and support within a faith-based program to hundreds of women working to overcome addictions and rebuild their families, and the only program in Pennsylvania that includes the children in treatment with their mothers.
Most people don’t believe that positive changes can be made in lives torn apart with drugs or alcohol – at least not through one’s own efforts. They either mock actions taken by those who want to help or have a cynical attitude. But to believers who infuse prayer and the power of the Holy Spirit, miracles happen.
When the mothers and their children arrive at the retreat, a family photo is taken, which is later framed and decorated by the children. Then the mothers listen to an inspirational presentation while the children are separated into age groups and given craft items to make. After the presentation, a meal is served. None of this could happen without the help of volunteers for child-care, greeters, photographers and meal service.
The Community Partnerships of the Mission Action Community and the pastoral staff at Shadyside Presbyterian Church make financial contributions to Sojourner House and donate personal care items during the holidays. But three years ago, they were inspired to reach out to the emotional and spiritual needs of the mothers and children. Word spread and now Sojourner House moms are knocking down the doors to attend this event.