Day 4: Flatlanders Inn, May 28

Flatlanders Inn by Alanna Watton 

Flatlanders Inn is a transitional housing community serving many people who have found themselves in hard times and on the street in Winnipeg, Manitoba. It also happens to share a beautiful old building with the Winnipeg Central Vineyard church. HtH had the amazing opportunity to be shown some of the Flatlander space as well as spend some time learning about the people that live in the Flatlander community. Flatlanders is set up so that there are several different rooming situations. Families or individuals from the Vineyard church volunteer for 2 years to live in the Flatlanders community to provide a stable, loving and supportive presence as more vulnerable peoples live in the transitional housing units. These volunteers pay rent, do chores, are friends and counselors in time of need, and they also go about living their own daily lives in the work place and raising kids.

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I was so blessed by the beauty of this model. I love the idea of living life with others in a very tangible way to walk alongside them amidst their struggles. I saw a picture of the church caring for the ‘widows and orphans’ of our society and living out their callings. As we walked through the facility, the beauty that surrounded me encouraged me. The artwork on the walls, the quality of the furniture, the craftsmanship of the architecture, and the wonderful stories surrounded me. It felt like a sacred place, a raw place, a place where transformation and authenticity met and the love of Jesus was known.

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My takeaway from our experience at Flatlanders is how am I going to respond to me calling to live out redemptive community in my own city? How am I going to walk alongside people who are hurting? How am I going to continually humble myself to learn from other’s whose life experience is so different from my own?

Flatlanders Communal Kitchen

As an HtH community, it was really neat to see how the Winnipeg Central Vineyard Church was actually being the church in its downtown community. It made me wonder…how are we being the church in our own Calgary communities?

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Day 4: Drop In at WCV, May 28

Winnipeg Centre Vineyard Drop in – by Kaitlin Krell

My name is Kaite and I am studying event planning at a college in Calgary.

On May 28th, we had the opportunity to visit Winnipeg Centre Vineyard  (www.winnipegcentrevineyard.com) during their morning drop in. Drop in occurs every Tuesday and Thursday morning from 10:00 am – 11:30 am. It is a gathering for the Street Community. It is a time for friendship, food and coffee. During the time we were there, coffee, bagels, soup and sandwiches were served.

When I first heard this was happening in our schedule, I was instantly stressed out. This was WAY outside my comfort zone and definitely pushed the boundaries of my safe little world.

While there, I met a very kind man named Leonard who is an exceptional writer. He shared with me a poem. In meeting him, my own safe little world grew to include someone new. It amazes me how God will bring reassurance and courage when you need it.

Kaite, Leonard, Jon

Here is the poem he shared with me.

This New Talk

There was a place in time; they said that I should be

Something that I could not be.

There was a place in time, when they said that I would not

Amount to anything.

There was a place in time, when I was taught that

Love had a price.

This time I have learned a new talk, and this new talk

Tells me that I am just right.

This new talk tells me that I do not need to amount to

Anything, because I’m already somebody.

This new talk tells me that I am unique and lovable.

That I can love without restrictions.

This new talk tells me that when I seek the good

In others, I will surely find it.

For those of you who are full of sorrow and pain,

And for those of you who desire, that light

At the end of the tunnel.

My friend, I can suggest to you that you live a good life

And that you too, learn this new talk.

By Leonard. (Used with permission)