Southwest Good
Samaritan Ministries
The Good Samaritan: A Lenten Love Story

This year, for the first time since 1945, when World War II was still being fought in the Pacific, Valentine's Day and Ash Wednesday fall on the same day. This has left churches reflecting on the meaning of these two together, as well as, on whether people would be choosing to celebrate one instead of the other.

It is our most human and most God-like characteristic that we wish to be loved and to show love. Valentine's Day is the Day of Love, both romantic and friendship, in our culture. Ash Wednesday is the beginning of our contemplation of the "greatest gift" of love that God had for us, that God's Light would be willing to endure on the cross and demonstrate how to love completely and selflessly for those who do not deserve love.

Yet love was freely shown.

We hear the call of Jesus, echoing the Hebrew Scripture, to love the Lord, your God, with all your heart, and with all your soul, and with all your strength, and with all your mind; and your neighbor as yourself. (Luke 10:27)

But what does it mean to love one's neighbor? That is found not in a definition, but in the Parable of the Good Samaritan. (Luke 10:30-37) Jesus speaks of a man striped and beaten and left for dead by the side of the road. Both a priest and a business person pass him by on the other side of the road. Yet the "Samaritan," a foreigner from a group often reviled, tends his injuries, transports him to safety, pays what he has for the immediate needs, and promises to pay for any additional needs.

Amazing!

Our neighbor was a stranger, but now is known and loved by us, cared for today and tomorrow. Our neighbors are all those who walk through life in the same moment as us, and especially those stripped and beaten and left for dead. This demanding commandment to LOVE our neighbor as ourselves is the goal that Jesus Christ set before us as the way to demonstrate our faithfulness and Love for God.

This is what we strive to do at Southwest Good Samaritan Ministries every day in God's name and through your continuing support. The needs are many -- food, clothing, housing, transportation, counseling, medical and legal services. Your support is more appreciated that you could ever know.

We thank God for you, and send you our LOVE each and everyday.

    




Connected in God's Love

When I was most in need during my days in Cuba, a wonderful family took me in and saw to my needs until I was ready to move on and finally come to the United states. 

Cuban immigration to the US has been curtailed for a few years now. This means that those who are fleeing persecution and seeking freedom of religion and speech are often trapped in Mexico without resources. There they are often persecuted again as outsiders. One of the people trapped in Mexico with few resources and much danger to herself was Zu, the daughter of the family who had helped me so many years ago. 

Through your support of Southwest Good Samaritan Ministries, she traveled to the US border and presented herself, requesting asylum. She was able to petition the officer and, because of the credible threat to her life, she received an immediate release. With your support, Zu has moved this week to live with a friend in Houston as she awaits her court date there. 

Thanks be to God for all these blessings! Please continue to pray for Zu and so many others as they approach their days in immigration court.

  

Your Brother in Christ,

Feliberto




Feliberto's 80th Birthday

Shhhh!

If you would like to help us celebrate Feliberto's 80th birthday this March 9th, and we know you would, we have a SWGSM wish list from him for the next year.

#1 Bring 8 mission group for a spiritual retreats, cross-cultural experiences, and/or work trips. (We have lots of great options we can discuss with you, or we can help you design one to fit your needs.)

#2 Make a recurring donation through our on-line giving program. (We have an $80,000 goal to support our refugee travel and family reunification budget, so every dollar counts.)

#3 Send your favorite memories in pictures, short videos, or cards by February 25 to:

Sharmin.DeMoss@gmail.com

or 4604 Archer Drive

The Colony, TX 75056

(I'll get them sorted and compiled to surprise him in time for his birthday. Please send items that we can share.)

#4 Pray with SWGSM and for us. We are using our Newsletter, Facebook, and Website to connect better with you. Feliberto has been sharing his prayer requests so they can go out to you, and we can pray together.

#5 If you feel that together with God we are making the difference you want to be in the world, please share and invite friends, co-workers, and church groups to join us in the circle of love and compassion.

Thank you for helping Celebrate the life of one who so completely answers God's call each day of his life.


For further information in response to the current
Refugee Crisis, click here.
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I Was A Stranger




Seeing the face of the God of Jesus in the face and the journey of each of these brothers and sisters--the least of these--makes us feel like we are always in touch with the anguish of the cross but also with the hope of the resurrection.

  - Feliberto Pereira, Founder


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