2216 S. Cedar St., Lansing MI 48910 ~ www.BEaRESCUER.org ~ 517.485.0145
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Mission Needs (click for more):
Canned Fruit
Canned Veggies
Creamer (powdered)
New Underwear
New Men's Undershirts


For the first time in her life, “Samantha” was homeless. The house she was living in was red-tagged by the city, and she couldn’t go back. Her mind immediately began to assess her options. There were two possibilities for work and a temporary living situation, but neither of them accommodated her young daughter. Samantha asked her daughter’s father to temporarily care for the young girl, while she took the time to figure out what to do for the both of them. “I didn’t want to go to a shelter,” she remembered vividly, “I really didn’t want to go to a shelter.” However, it soon became apparent that she didn’t have much choice. While she “couch surfed” (stayed with friends), she couldn’t always have her daughter visit her. When she was in a place where her daughter could visit and stay for a few days, her ex began to put up barriers. It was already difficult due to Samantha’s lack of transportation, and she finally decided to talk with him about it. He refused to discuss the situation, and Samantha saw that her little girl, who had lived with her all her life, was miserable.

She started calling shelters the next day, with the hope of finding a place where they could be together. There was availability at the Mission. When they arrived, she remembers, “I was impressed...this is a positive, safe place to be.” As for her little girl, “She loved it. It was an adventure for her.” Not only did her daughter feel safe, she was overjoyed to be back with her mother. As for Samantha, she was relieved after months of being homeless and never knowing where she might be on any given night. To receive a new, clean pair of pajamas, have hygiene items, and take a shower was all so appreciated.

She also greatly appreciated the counseling offered not only to guests but also to former guests who want to continue. A Mission casework coordinator assisted her in setting goals and reaching those goals. Samantha also found a church and feels very nurtured and supported there.

Today, Samantha and her daughter are in their own home. Her little girl misses children’s chapel at the Mission, but they are happy to be together and are doing well. She is so grateful to those whose generosity and support helped her during a difficult time. “It has made a huge difference in my life.”

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A Message from Mark: "For a reason and a season"

“In my Father’s house, are many rooms. If it were not so, would I have told you that I go to prepare a place for you?” (John 14:2)

Recently, I came into my office and found a neatly printed letter sitting on my desk in prominent view. The letter was from a woman in our shelter, and it began, “Mark, I just wanted to write this letter letting you know how much I appreciate the staff and how God is using this shelter to change my life and I will never be the same.” That opening line of gratitude was encouraging to me, and I hope is encouraging to you as well. This is the reason that we provide Food, Shelter, and the Hope that is in the Gospel of Jesus Christ. It is simply not enough to meet the physical needs without addressing spiritual needs that provide eternal change in a person’s life. The letter continued with, “I thought I was living a saved life. There are so many times when I have been living in sin and never felt convicted until I came to the shelter. I know God told me to come here for a reason and a season. I’m ever so grateful to be here and learn how to live a Christ following life.”

There are many reasons that people become homeless, and there is no single cause. However, a common theme that runs through it all is bad choices: their own bad choices or the impact from other people’s bad choices. Either way, the results are weighty and often these bad choices escalate into a sinful lifestyle that draws a person more and more away from God and the things of God. However, how wonderful it is that “God has prepared a place” for people who truly need Him! This enables us to share the same truth about Jesus, that He shared with His disciples: “I am the way and the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me” (v.6). God utilizes the City Rescue Mission to change lives. God does this through the truth of the Gospel as revealed in Scripture. For over 107 years, rescuers like yourself have enabled these doors to be opened and save lives. Thank you for always making an impact. Thank you for being a rescuer.

To God be the Glory,
Mark Criss
Executive Director

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"Rescue" News: Service Summary for the First Quarter of 2019

Women & Children’s Shelter: 5,501 Nights (61 people per night)
Men’s Shelter: 5,621 Nights (62 people per night)
Drop-In Center: 2,905 Nights* (41 people per night)


*Drop-in Center “The Outreach” opened January 21, 2019.

Total Meals Offered: 18,879
Total Hygiene Kits Provided: 163
Total Bibles Distributed: 100

Classes Offered: 14 (566 Total Attendance)
Casework: 533 Sessions (138 Individuals)
Counseling: 113 Sessions (65 Individuals)

Providing FOOD, SHELTER, & HOPE to 882 Individuals

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Cook's Corner: Creamy Potato Salad

Family Size: 10 Servings
5 medium Potatoes (about 2.5 lbs), peeled and diced
Half a medium Onion, finely chopped
3 large Eggs, hard boiled and peeled
1 large Egg, hard boiled and peeled (for garnish)
1 cup + 1/3 cup of Mayonnaise
1 Tbsp Yellow Mustard
Garlic Powder (to taste)
Salt and Pepper (to taste)
Paprika (for garnish)
Optional: Chopped Celery or Bell Pepper

Mission Size: 120 Servings
30 lbs medium Potatoes, peeled and diced
6 medium Onions, finely chopped
36 large Eggs, hard boiled and peeled
8 large Eggs, hard boiled and peeled (for garnish)
2 60-ounce jars of Mayonnaise
1 cup Yellow Mustard
Garlic Powder (to taste)
Salt and Pepper (to taste)
Paprika (for garnish)
Optional: Chopped Celery or Bell Pepper

Boil Potatoes until cooked but still firm; cool slightly. While Potatoes are cooling, mix Mayonnaise and Mustard; add Garlic Powder and Salt and Pepper to taste; set aside mixture. Take cooled Potatoes and cut or break up into bite-size chunks. Chop or break up hard boiled Eggs into pieces; crumble yolks. (Slice and set aside the Eggs for garnish.) Combine chopped Eggs and Potatoes; add in chopped Onion; stir in Mayonnaise mixture. Top with sliced Eggs and Paprika to garnish.

This recipe was edited from its first appearance in our June 2013 newsletter.

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