An Encounter With A Street Kid

15 01 2009

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–by Jenny Schroedel

Jim (name changed) is dying of AIDS. Today, he came to the art table at the drop-in center, grinning wildly. I said, “Jim, how are you?” He said he was (some incredibly long strand of adjectives, all meaning fabulous). I asked why. He said his T-cell count is up, that his doctor is baffled by it and he is thrilled. Read the rest of this entry »

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Outreach to Street Kids

15 01 2009

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– by Fr. George Gray

Portland, Oregon, is one of the places in the country which attracts lots of young people who live on the streets. Some come from families who live in the area. Most come from far way. This is an odd phenomenon because Portland’s weather and climate are not the most welcoming for much of the year. It’s usually raining. Nonetheless, on any given day or night a walk downtown will demonstrate that Portland is popular with street kids.

Some are very young. “Spider” (that’s his street name) is 14 and has been on the streets for at least a year and a half. He was a gentle, seemingly naive “typical” American pre-teen when he left his home. Much of that has changed by now. When we last saw him, he was anxious and grieving because his best friend (the same age) had just died of an overdose. Spider was scared. Read the rest of this entry »