Merry Christmas From Lafayette Urban Ministry

Consider a Gift to LUM This Christmas Season

I come into the peace of wild things
Who do not tax their lives
With forethought of grief…
I rest in the grace of the world,
And am free.

December 2020

Dear Friend,

This poem by Wendell Berry has been instructive to me in recent years. When I feel anxious and despairing, it reminds me to keep a bigger perspective. At times I have actually put the words of this poem into practice. I have dropped everything, ventured out into the natural world, observed the peace of wild things, and found my heart quieted and reassured.

At Christmas, I celebrate the faith that this grace of the world is not some vague cosmic force but has a name and a human face. Christmas is the celebration that the grace of the world has taken human form, bringing us everlasting peace, rest, and freedom.

In this, my first year at Lafayette Urban Ministry, I have observed the grace of the world making a difference through our work together. As a faith-based, community-wide effort tackling basic human needs and uplifting the people of Greater Lafayette, LUM has risen to the unique challenges of 2020 and continues to serve people every day and every night. 

So far this year, Lafayette Urban Ministry served 2,735 households through one of our 22 programs.

These statistics would be impressive in any given year. In this tremendously tumultuous 2020, these numbers underscore the grit and generosity of people such as yourself — people who have not been frozen by forethought of grief but instead have doggedly decided to think of those less fortunate than themselves. 

In the spirit of peace, rest, and freedom for this Christmas season, I hope that you will support the important work of Lafayette Urban Ministry with a financial gift. Your contribution of $50, $100, $250, $500, or $1,000 will be used to alleviate the needs of children and their families, right here in our own community. 

I have included below Wendell Berry’s poem The Peace of Wild Things. I send it along with a prayer that you will experience the peace of wild things and may rest in the grace of the world. Thank you very much for the great kindness you have consistently shown toward those LUM serves. May peace, rest and freedom be yours this Christmas season. Merry Christmas!

With sincere gratitude,

Wes Tillett
Executive Director
Lafayette Urban Ministry

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The Peace of Wild Things by Wendell Berry

When despair for the world grows in me

and I wake in the night at the least sound

in fear of what my life and my children’s lives may be,

I go and lie down where the wood drake

rests in his beauty on the water,

and the great heron feeds.

I come into the peace of wild things

who do not tax their lives with forethought

of grief. I come into the presence of still water.

And I feel above me the day-blind stars

waiting with their light. For a time

I rest in the grace of the world, and am free.

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