Biloxi church reaches out to homeless women and children

By Danielle Thomas - bio | email

BILOXI, MS (WLOX) - As more families struggle to make ends meet, a Biloxi church is reaching out to women and children who've fallen on hard financial times. Faith Tabernacle of Praise bought a house where homeless women and children under the age of 12 can go for support. Those who arrive at the house will get more than just a place to stay.

Bishop James Black says many prayers went out asking how Faith Tabernacle of Praise could better serve the community.

"We had been planning to do something and asking the Lord to guide us and direct us in what we should do," said Bishop Black. "He showed us to reach out to women and children."

The desire to help women and children led the church to purchase a house and completely renovate it.

Church member Sandra Taylor said, "It's three bedrooms. We have seven beds to start with. It's going to be a home for women that are homeless."

"It's not necessarily a shelter but a home for women that are homeless, that maybe cannot go to the Women's Center for Non-Violence. Just maybe their home is living in their cars because they lost their jobs. Or they've just gotten out of prison, and they just need a place to stay."

Church officials say women with children under 12-years-old can stay here up to six months. During that time the congregation will work with the mothers to become self-sufficient.

"We're going to provide them transportation if they need it and credit counseling and financial management counseling," said Taylor. "In our church, we also have a computer lab that has internet access, so they can look for houses and look for jobs. Just get on their feet. "

Bishop Black says by extending a hand to women in need, the congregation will better understand what it means to love thy neighbor.

"We are carrying out the word of God," said Bishop Black. "I hope it will also be a lesson to them as well."

Faith Tabernacle of Praise is accepting applications from women who would like to move into the house. For more information call 374-3010 or 374-5606.