Sr. Rosanne & friends solve a ring or rent dilemma for a couple struggling in the pandemic.

WRITTEN BY SR. ROSANNE POPP, CCVI, M.D.

During a routine clinic visit, I asked Gene (not his real name) how he was surviving the economic stresses of the pandemic. He told me that he had not yet been called back to work so their resources were little to none. He and his wife, (also a patient at CHRISTUS St. Mary’s Clinic), had received some economic assistance but, with the pandemic lasting so long, they had exhausted all their existing funds. As a side note, he admitted that they had to pawn his wife’s wedding ring to pay the rent so they would not get evicted. This was especially difficult since they had been married 35 years and now they had to part with the most precious symbol of their marriage. His wife, Deena (not her real name) agreed that this was a painful necessity and with the bleak economic outlook the probability of getting it back was slim to none.

I thought surely there must be a way to help this couple get the wedding ring back, pay the rent, and bring a little happiness and stability back into their lives. So, I began sharing their plight with friends and coworkers and looking into pockets and corners for whatever monies I could find. And true to our CHRISTUS mission to extend Jesus’ healing ministry (in the fullest sense of the word), associates and friends donated enough money to get the ring back and pay rent for the next two months.

I called Deena with the news. She was shocked and grateful beyond words. Danielle Ivie, a CHRISTUS Foundation staffer, and I went with her to the pawn shop and retrieved the ring and watched her put it back on her finger where it belonged and had been for 35 years.

Then, Deena, Danielle, and I went to the trailer park where she and her husband lived to put down money for rent for the next two months. When we explained to the landlady why we were there she looked at us quizzically. It took her a minute to figure out what we wanted to do, something obviously very foreign to her. Meanwhile, Deena told the landlady that we were from “her clinic” and explained again what we intended to do. So, we completed the transaction and as we said our goodbyes. Deena again, with a smile from ear to ear, expressed gratitude and disbelief that someone would want to help them.

Then, the landlady looked at Danielle and myself and paid us the ultimate compliment. She said “you must be good people.” And, we said we were and that there were a whole lot of “good people” who helped solve the ring or rent dilemma and continue every day “To Extend the Healing Ministry of Jesus Christ.”

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