True-Life Stories of God’s Provision Through You! January/February 2020

New Life & a Better 2020

Last March was the lowest point of James’ life. He had just been released from jail and had nowhere to go. It seemed like no one wanted him around anymore. So he went to the beach to spend the night, only to lose his balance and fall into the frigid water. Though he was able to pull himself out, all night he was overwhelmed by the cold, pain, shame and feelings of rejection and hopelessness.

“The next morning, I knew what I had to do,” he says. “I was going to take what little money I had left to purchase enough heroin to kill myself.”

Drugs and alcohol were a part of James’ life for as long as he can remember. Growing up, everyone in his family was an addict. So he learned early that he could drink and use drugs to medicate all his problems away. “After high school, I started working and raising my own family,” James says. “I always used drugs, but I also always took care of my bills and my family. My kids meant everything to me, and I really believed I was a devoted father. That’s what I thought. But heroin proved me wrong.”

When James started using heroin in his late 20s, he sacrificed everything for it, including his wife and kids. He ended up homeless, in and out of jail, pursuing heroin and letting it take control to the point of nearly taking his own life—but he didn’t. Instead, he came to the Milwaukee Rescue Mission.

“I love my children. I didn’t want to die, I wanted to be part of their lives,” he says. “So when I came here, I gave myself completely to Jesus Christ. I gave up my shame and self-hatred. I embraced Christ’s love, I opened myself to the love of everyone here and I learned to love myself again.”

God is working in James’ life in so many ways today. He’s even talking to his kids and family again. “I have hope for a better 2020,” he says. “I have a new life no one can ever take away from me. That’s what your support for the Milwaukee Rescue Mission did for me. You saved my life! Thank you!”

Please Provide Life-Saving Help for Our Hurting Neighbors This Winter

For most of us, it’s impossible to imagine what it’s like to be homeless any time of the year. But in winter, the stress and fear that men, women and children devastated by homelessness feel in the face of life-threatening cold is unbearable. Today, you can help save someone’s life—and maybe even change a life for eternity.

Your donation will help provide them with warm, safe shelter, hot meals and clothing. Even more, you will give them access to education, counseling, help in overcoming substance abuse, job training and, most important, they will hear the gospel of Jesus Christ, who can transform their lives forever.



Any gifts received over the current need will be used for shelter throughout the year.


Save the Date!

The Milwaukee Rescue Mission will host our annual banquet on Thursday, May 7, 2020, at Discovery World. An evening of fun, food, fellowship, dining and inspiration will be on the menu! Proceeds from the event will help homeless men, women and children start over and rebuild their lives on a firm foundation. For more information, contact or call 414-935-0253.

See to register.

“The Old Has Gone, the New Is Here!”

by Patrick H. Vanderburgh, D.Min. President

“Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, the new creation has come: The old has gone, the new is here!”—2 Corinthians 5:17 (NIV)

I can’t imagine a better verse to ring in a brand-new year and a brand-new decade. “The old has gone, the new is here!” Thanks to committed friends and partners like you, transforming the lives of our hurting neighbors through the power of Jesus Christ is what the Milwaukee Rescue Mission is all about.

Yes, with your support, we are committed to providing critical resources like food and shelter to our neighbors devastated by homelessness. That is the love of Christ in action. But even more, we aspire to go beyond that, offering them vital programs that give them the chance to put their broken lives back together through God’s grace.

Throughout 2019, I was overwhelmed with gratitude as I witnessed God heal the wounds of past traumas, years of homelessness and devastating addictions—and I’ve rejoiced when he gave new life to hurting men and women.

The same is true for the students who attend Cross Trainers Academy and all our youth programs. As we provide these precious kids with a solid education, we share God’s love with them—and they learn how dearly loved they are by Jesus!

With your generosity and God’s grace, I believe that 2020 is going to be an extraordinary year! “The old has gone, the new is here!” On behalf of those we serve, thank you for journeying with us in this new year!

I thank God for you,

Patrick H. Vanderburgh, D.Min.