Thanksgiving is a time for families and friends to gather and celebrate the bounty of the season. More pointedly toward the reader of this article (Omega Men), it is also a time of reflection of gratitude and thanks for God’s blessings, our family, home, careers, communities, daily comforts, and abilities to give back.
For those without a home or family, Thanksgiving can be very lonely. And for many in Fairfax County along the Route 1 corridor, the holiday is a stark reminder of their struggle with hunger. Psi Alpha Alpha Chapter of Omega Psi Phi Fraternity Incorporated is an enduring community partner with New Hope Housing Inc. and is heavily involved in many of its volunteer programs. The Chapter’s heartfelt act of service to New Hope Housing Inc is serving a homemade Thanksgiving meal to its homeless neighbors. The Brothers get super excited about demonstrating compassion in action.
For a third year, on Monday, November 25, 2019, Psi Alpha Alpha Chapter, Third District, Omega Psi Phi Fraternity, INC. served over 70 dinners during “Thanksgiving Monday” at the Kennedy Shelter of New Hope Housing Inc. Chapter Brothers played a massive role in making “Thanksgiving Monday” extra special for our homeless neighbors and staff. The meal consisted of ham, roast beef, smoked brisket, fried turkey, stuffing, mashed potatoes, seasoned corn, green beans, collard greens, candied yams, pumpkin pie, sweet potato pie, pecan pie, and assorted cakes. Enough food remained to feed another 40 or more who would come in later after serving hours.
Brothers with lesser culinary skills rolled up their sleeves and got to work wherever needed, be it setting up tables and chairs in the dining area, washing dishes, emptying trash, or keeping the kitchen clean. Brother Malcom Murray, our resident Dentist handed out dental packets. Other Brothers gave spectator support to those frying the turkeys.
General feedback from our homeless neighbors and some staff was while the meal was excellent, it was the thoughtfulness and care of strangers who were volunteering their time, which made me feel loved. A lady came through the serving line said, “it was hard to believe they would give up time on their day to serve someone like me.”
Brother Antonio Coleman, Thanksgiving Committee Chairman, stated “when Brothers take time to serve a meal, offer a compassionate smile, and treat our homeless neighbors with grace and dignity, never expecting anything in return—it is a beautiful picture of how Christ loves each of us and thus, we, the men of Omega get the opportunity to love thy neighbor as thy self.”
After our homeless neighbors departed the dining area, the pots and pans were washed and put away and Brothers left the shelter, it was safe to say Thanksgiving Monday was a tremendous success. In the spirit of Manhood, the first of four Beloved Fraternity’s Cardinal of Principals, Psi Alpha Alpha following the example of Jesus, the Chapter washed the feet of its homeless neighbors by sharing and serving a Thanksgiving meal of love.