It is one thing to assent to the value of something, it is quite another to pay the price for it. While a member of the Vestry, Ross Ferraro was part of the decision making for Christ Our King to be a founding church in a ministry to the homeless in our community, Family Promise. Like all of the Vestry, he knew that the Lord’s heart was for us to “bring the homeless poor into [our] house” (Is. 58:7). So, we agreed to host homeless families in our Ministry Center for a week each quarter as they work to get back on their feet.

After the initial leaders’ roles changed, Ross was asked to be the parish coordinator for this ministry. He told me, “It doesn’t sound very spiritual now, but I had no reason to say no.” Probing further, however, I found that his initial involvement with Family Promise was based on his conviction from Matthew 25 that we are to minister to those in need. Ross asserted that the “Lord keeps telling us that this is what we are supposed to be doing.”

He coordinates the ministry of 40-50 parishioners who set up beds, make meals, play with the children, and spend the night with the families at the church. With all the help from parishioners, Ross feels like he doesn’t do very much. In fact, he says that the “church members who sign up are excited to do it again!”

As his Pastor, I see that Ross pays a price for what he values. He not only oversees the ministry, he sacrifices his time and rest in order to be there each night of the week to welcome the families as they return from their job searches; engage the children, modeling the Father’s love to the fatherless; and, along with his wife, spend a night with the families. Yet, he and those who serve with him feel they are blessed more than the families they serve. And isn’t that the way of the Lord? There is a cost to give, but we discover “it truly is more blessed to give than to receive.”