McHenry Co. church travels to Rockford doing random acts of kind - – Rockford’s News Leader

McHenry Co. church travels to Rockford doing random acts of kindness

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Leslie Carr says she's been homeless for about a year in Rockford.

"Its kind of hard being on the streets homeless, plus mentally illness on top of that," Carr said.  "In and out of jail, in and out of psych wards. It's hard."  

She said its difficult to maintain her well being and health.

"Its very hard to get that or to obtain that living on the streets." 

 However, members of a church group from Harvard, Illinois, only about 30 miles away, wants to give her and others hope this weekend.  The church Pastor Jordan Gardner said that is the biggest thing they give.

"Just someone out there caring is a big deal," Gardner said.

Solid Rock Community Church members visited downtown Rockford with a mission, doing random acts of kindness for total strangers.

 "You don't know what they're going through in life and they could be going through something terrible and when you come and show them you care it makes them happier," 13 year old church volunteer Dezzy Ingersoll said.

The group has done similar projects for the past year and a half, raising money to make these mission trips happen.

"We're helping the homeless," Gardner said. "We're helping the abused.  We're helping at risk teens."

Church members started in the morning serving coffee and donuts to those in need and giving them items like toothpaste, deodorant, and even clothing. 

Later they bought them breakfast.  Gardner said the foundation of their faith is what inspires them to give.

"We do our mission trips really because we feel first of all that in order to serve Jesus we have to serve people.  we honestly believe that you can't love god and hate people," Gardner said.  "So based upon those two truths we want to serve people we want to help them."

For Carr it wasn't the day she expected.

"I usually go to the library and hang out sometimes just to stay warm," Carr said.

However, it's one that gave her some help and hope.

Church members made this an all-day trip in Rockford.  Gardner said later they would visit a local nursing home, took at-risk youth to an arcade, and paid for strangers' gas and groceries.  They have done this in other cities Chicago and plan to do the same in Milwaukee soon.

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