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Generosity in Action

by Sister Rosanne Popp, M.D.

I am the recipient of many donations – from medications to medically-related items for someone who has a need. In receiving these items, I sometimes wonder what use I could possibly have for that particular item, but I never refuse a donation because you never can tell.

That was the case last week when I received an unusual message from staff about someone in need of a wheelchair. The staff related that they couldn’t understand the person or his inquiry because of the background noise and would I please call him back.

I called him back, and he told me that he was a homeless man living on the street (hence the background noise). He was an amputee whose present wheelchair no longer worked and he was having difficulty getting around.  Someone suggested to call St. Mary’s Clinic, and that we could help him get a new wheelchair.

I told him that we weren’t in the business of finding wheelchairs, but I would see what I could do.  I also contacted the local homeless agency that he mentioned and found that his story was true.

So now for the wheelchair. I remembered that shortly after we moved into the new building someone donated a used wheelchair. We cleaned it up and put it away since you never can tell when someone might need one. I went looking around and found it tucked up under the stairs, well out of anyone’s sight. I pulled it out, gave it a dusting off and put it in my car to talk to the gentleman.

I didn’t get to give it to him personally, but a few minutes after the designated pickup time, I received a phone call from a very happy man. He was thrilled to have his new(ish) wheel chair to navigate around the city and hopefully soon into his new accommodations. (He is on the housing waiting list.)

All this to let you know that generosity and donations are greatly appreciated, since you never can tell when and what the next need will be.

Thank you and God bless everyone who is generous in any way to make another’s life better.

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