Mission Devine: Fixing more than sinks

It was an early morning in June when my grandson tagged along with me. You see on this day I was volunteering for a local non-profit that helps widows, widowers, veterans and others in the community with house hold issues.
Well at this one particular address was an 84 year old widow who needed her sink fixed.
So, we arrived at her home. As we got out of my pickup, you couldn’t help but notice the lawn was rather overgrown, it looked as if the entry door to the house was just about to fall off of its hinges.
My grandson asked me “Papa, does anyone live here?”
I replied “Yes, someone very special lives here.”
About the time we stepped up to the door, it opened. And a weakened but pleasant voice said “Hello, can I help you gentlemen?”
That’s when we told her who we were and that we were with the organization she had asked to help fix her sink. At that moment she got the greatest smile on her face. She looked at my grandson and said, “Welcome young man, what is your name?”
Well he gave her his name and that’s when she told him, “you can call me Abuela.”
She then asked us in and escorted us to her kitchen sink. Upon inspection of the sink plumbing it was obvious what the problem was so we got to work on the sink and within about 2 hours and few new parts, the sink was fixed and working just fine.
When we showed Abuela the working sink, she began to cry tears of joy. She then told my grandson that she lived alone, and how she had lost her husband 20 years earlier, and that she had no children of her own. Her brother used to help her with such thing’s but he had passed away about 5 years earlier.
After about 5 minutes of hugs and tears, we stuck around for a few more hours. We replaced her broken screened door and mowed her yard. In the meanwhile she had gone into her kitchen and made us a few sandwiches and iced tea. So we spent another 30 minutes sitting with her in her kitchen and listening to her stories of her youth, family and life in general. Needless to say, it was a great day.
After picking up all our tools and cleaning up our mess, we said goodbye to Abuela. She walked us to end of her freshly cut yard, hugged us both, and said, “this is not goodbye but hello. You are welcome back anytime.”
We thanked her, got into our truck, and left. It was at that moment that my grandson looked at me and said, “Papa, I think we fixed more than a sink.”
If you would like to help someone like Abuela, come join Mission Devine anytime next week. June 10th – 15th. We will be at St. Joseph’s Catholic Hall. We will be there everyday 7:30am to 5:PM. If you would like more info, please call 830-931-1532 or log on to our website www.missiondevine.org and complete our volunteer application. It’s that simple and more rewarding than you can possibly know until you show up.
Volunteers of all ages and skill sets are needed.
By Patrick Bourcier