When was a time when you really experienced flourishing in your life?
Flourishing is a word that is used often around Redeemer, and so there may be different ideas that come to your mind. Maybe when you think of flourishing, you imagine a time excelling in a career you loved, or holding your newborn child, or crossing the finish line of a half marathon.
We know God’s intention for the world is to see all people flourish — and that He sent Christ to redeem the world, to restore areas of death and decay to life and flourishing.
At Hope for New York, our vision is to see each person in our city live the way God intended for them to live. We want all New Yorkers to experience the full dignity and humanity of what it means to be made in the image of God, to truly thrive and flourish in every way — spiritually, socially, and economically.
But we know that flourishing is not a reality for many in our city. One of every five New Yorkers live at or below the level of poverty. Over 60,000 individuals are without homes living in shelters or on the streets. 1.5 million New Yorkers are living with food insecurity.
When you read these statistics or see poverty on the streets, it may feel like a never-ending battle to you. You may feel hopeless, indifferent, or just paralyzed.
I can relate. As a lifelong New Yorker who has been in anti-poverty work for nearly 20 years, I can attest that this work is not easy. Poverty is real, progress is slow, and there are no overnight solutions.
But I can also share with you that I have seen so many stories of hope and transformation and, yes, flourishing over the years — and, as this year comes to a close, I’m more expectant and hopeful than ever about how God is bringing restoration to our city. We at Hope for New York are celebrating his faithfulness in the form of:
• The 3,500 volunteers, many of whom are from Redeemer churches, who served on the ground at our non-profit affiliates, doing everything from scrambling eggs to renovating buildings to workshopping resumes.
• The five new non-profit affiliates (Dream Center NYC, Expect Hope, Prison Fellowship, Thrive Collective, and Urban Hope) we added to our family — including our first-ever affiliate on Staten Island!
• Our three new church partners — Hope Midtown, Redeemer Lincoln Square, and Renaissance NYC — who join our seven other partner churches as congregations who are committed to prioritizing doing justice and loving mercy.
• Our generous supporters who enabled us to give $2.1 million in grants to invest in the areas of homelessness, youth programs, workforce development and many more.
In the next 10 years, we want to expand our non-profit partners from 45 to 90 affiliates and increase our church partners from 10 to 30. Just imagine the kind of effect more churches and organizations dedicated to holistic flourishing could have on our city!
We want to make even progress toward that goal in 2018, which is why, this month, we are asking you to prayerfully consider making a year-end gift to support this work. You can make your year-end gift by:
• Giving online at hfny.org/donate
• Sending a check to Hope for New York, 1166 Avenue of the Americas, Suite 1610, New York, NY 10023
• Asking your company if they match charitable donations
• Becoming a monthly supporter by joining The Hope Exchange at hfny.org/hopeexchange
We know that overall this work is not easy — Yet, we also know there is a hope that is beyond ourselves.
We trust that God, who loves each and every person in this city, is seeking our flourishing, as individuals, families, communities and neighborhoods. We believe shalom and restoration is possible only because we have hope in a God that loves and redeems the world.