Over the past 32 years, many people have pulled together to accomplish the House of Yahweh's (HOY) mission to the poor in the South Bay--philanthropic groups, various church leaders, businesses, and many individuals. Their assistance and care have helped HOY become the success we are today. We honor and thank all our outstanding supporters. As Executive Director Sister Michele Morris says, "The House of Yahweh is ours and as a team we have responded to God's call--the privilege of serving His poor”.
How The House Of Yahweh Started
Have you ever wondered how the House of Yahweh got its name and how it started? These words, "My Home, the House of Yahweh Forever" are taken from the Good Shepherd Psalm, Ps. 23:6. 25 Thirty-two years ago, when the House of Yahweh was but a hope and a dream, Sister Michele and Lyndon Reed (2 of the 5 co-founders) did a lot of praying. One morning while praying Psalm 23, those very words spoke out to them. Right then and there the House of Yahweh was named and dedicated to God. It has always been God's House, a "home", a place of welcome and refuge for all persons who entered its doors.
Getting started was a slow,slow and sometimes painful process. At that time we had no land, no money just the strong desire to reach out to the poor and needy in the South Bay. Finding the spot that was to become our home for 21 years was a miracle because there just wasn’t any available land to be found. But it happened and the rest is history. We’d become known as a soup kitchen and serving good meals became our trademark. Over the years our “soup kitchen” quickly evolved into a Social Service Center with expanded services which has included food outreach, emergency food, home deliveries of food, clothing and furniture outreach, advocacy, referrals, case management and most critically—housing.
Getting the money to start the House of Yahweh was a challenge. At the time Sister Michele was ministering at St. Catherine Laboure Catholic Church involved in Parish renewal weekends there. Those weekends worked as a powerful tool to “wake people up” to reach out and take action to help others. Sister approached the Pastor and told him she needed monies to start the House of Yahweh. She was confident that she could make $20,000 in two weekends if he would let her make an appeal for funds in church. She was so sure the people would respond to her request that she promised to return the money if she didn’t raise the $20,000 in the allotted time. What she did not know was that the pastor, at the same time, was going to be appealing for funds also to rebuild the rectory that had burned down.
Did Sister raise the $20,000? Not then, but she did collect over $8,000 in cash and pledges. She kept her promise though about returning the funds. She and a few other people phoned each donor and said, “We are going on with the project. Would you like your money back or may we keep it for seed money?” Ninty-nine percent of the people said, “Keep the money” and get on with the project. We’re with you.” With this money and a small group of ardent Renewal people, Sister and her Board of Directors—(the 5 founders)—started the House of Yahweh.
House of Yahweh Logo
Every tree comes from a tiny seed that gets planted in the ground and has to split open to birth new life. The seed grows invisibly, silently and slowly and for a long time it seems like nothing is happening, but it is. The small shoot appears and it too grows slowly and silently into a gigantic tree. What a mystery! That is why the House of Yahweh chose the "tree of life" for its logo.
We view our logo in two ways--as the "burning bush" and as "the tree of life." Exodus: 3 in the Old Testament describes the wonderment of Moses when he looked and saw a bush blazing, but it was not being burnt. God called to him from the middle of the bush and gave him a mission--to deliver his people from Pharaoh and lead them out of Egypt into the Promised Land.
In 1982 we did not see a burning bush but we chose our logo and symbol because we felt called by God to help his people--"to feed the hungry, clothe the naked and shelter the homeless." Mt.25:35. As the "tree of life" we see this tree as reaching out its branches welcoming and receiving all who come there to rest in its branches or to seek shelter and shade beneath them.
The House of Yahweh has always welcomed and continues to welcome each person who comes for help or just a place to rest for a while regardless of their race, color, creed, code or handicap. Like the seed that produces the tree, the House of Yahweh has grown slowly and silently over the years with little fanfare but with lots of people supporting its works with their time, money, treasure and talent.
A Message from Sister Michele Morris, Executive Director
The driving force that makes the House of Yahweh successful is LOVE.
One act of kindness done out of love is eternal.
Without love -- acts, no matter how good, are just that – acts.
Thank you for supporting HOY with your loving acts of kindness these past 34 years!
Copyrigth 2016 - House of Yahweh, All rights reserved.
The House of Yahweh (HOY) is a non-profit charitable corporation, providing a variety of services for the poor and needy in the South Bay community. HOY rules for acceptance and participation in our program are the same for everyone without regard to race, color, national origin, age, sex or handicap.
4046 Marine Avenue
Lawndale, CA 90260
Fax: + 310-644-1337
Click here to request our newsletter