Limey pastor a woeful weekend – community news – east oregonian antiemetic definition

Ten years ago, probably more than that, my wife and I intercepted a pregnant young lady — let us call her “A” — who had been abandoned by her man and left wandering the streets. We took her in, cared for her and located her mother, a truck driver back in Virginia, and tended to her for some weeks until her mother could drive her truck from Virginia to Oregon and pick up her lost, pregnant child. The father of her baby had run off with another girl and abandoned her.

Years later, I knew that she had married back east and had two other children. I had some confidence that things were better. But apparently they weren’t and some ten years passed by and Amber showed up at my house this last weekend. Not only showed up, but also brought an old friend she had found in a Troutdale encampment.


This woman — who I shall call “M” — had been beaten, strangled and had been set on fire in her tent so that her left forearm had been burned and blistered by the melting tent fabric. “M” was liquid with tears, and was covered with dirt and smoke grease.

This sadness, recurring from past nightmares, showed up on the weekend. My wife, who had found the earlier story we had lived in pretty taxing, was not pleased. We put up our first woman, “A,” and the new lady temporarily on the large couch until we could figure out the best next steps. “M” received a bath swiftly.

We found that “A” had been separated from all her children. Her ex-husband in Virginia and his family had removed the children from her care with the aid of their state’s child protective services, which had made her distraught and weepy. The next day, after sleep, long sleep, “A” told me that her husband had told her that he had shot and killed one of her friends — and that there were others who had been killed, according to “A.” It seemed that this knowledge may have somehow precipitated the children’s removal.

Later that day I took “A” to the local police station so that she could give a statement to police, which she did. I wasn’t clear about the whole story as emotions were high and tears were spilling. My wife fed the women and ultimately got them down to sleep.

The next day I made a contact with a women’s retreat center near us, equipped with a great deal of help. A Methodist-created center, it had access to the hospitals, doctors and resources of all kinds. My burnt woman was able to be placed here and then taken to the hospital where she got checked out. Her limbs and back were x-rayed and found that no bones were broken, and she was given a safe room and bed to call her own. As I understand it, she may stay here up to a year. Her children also had been taken from her and she was in constant pain in her soul as a result.

But here, she will be provided with job training, provided with health care and medication to deal with any ailments, and will have a net of ladies in similar situations that can be used as a collective braintrust to recovery from the pain of such things.

In the women’s facility there are so many neglected and burdened women who are climbing back to stronger life. Not a pain-free journey, but the pain is laced into a hardened amalgam in their structures, to give them the courage to keep moving and climbing over the hurdles that this bitter world gives us.

Jesus Christ is not a policeman. He embodies love and the cloud of folk, both people and angels who are about him, are his traveling hospital. I ask that your church reach out to these poor of the earth who end up at your doorsteps, not just to pass them alms or food, but to make contact with them and embrace them, for they are broken-hearted — broken-hearted beyond all imagining.