At Maggie’s Place, we have four core values that we strive to live by as MissionCorps and staff: love, hospitality, community, and excellence.
Within the pillar of hospitality, we strive to welcome every mom, baby, donor, volunteer and anyone else who is a guest in our home with dignity and love. Each individual offers us a unique opportunity to show love.
The pregnant women we open our homes to often come in “survival mode” as a result of the environment they may have lived in previously. Some come from homeless shelters or rehab; some were once in foster care and still others come from broken families.
They are often used to fighting for both their physical and emotional needs. As a result, they are often surprised at the hospitality they are shown when they come to Maggie’s Place. One of our moms who moved in recently was moved to tears when she came home for the first time and found that she had a room for herself and her baby and that there were donations ready for her basic needs.
Furthermore, hospitality in our homes runs deeper than simply welcoming others with a smile and providing material things. We provide a safe place for moms to share their lives with us, to heal wounds they may have, and to grow in a family- like environment. We provide encouragement as they rebuild their lives and take on the daunting task of new motherhood. Hospitality also means being willing to walk with our moms in their suffering.
We aim to simply be there for them even when we can’t solve every problem they bring to us. As a community, we strive to continually offer the gift of presence, including time, attention, and making a gift of self. Within our homes, this can be as simple as sitting at the kitchen table, visiting a mom in the hospital, or having a cup of tea on the couch.
Lastly, I have learned in my time as MissionCorps member that if we want to show others true hospitality, we must first open up our hearts to Him. With God dwelling inside us, it is much easier to choose love when meeting anyone who comes our way.
By Emily Lavastida, a MissionCorps member