The 5 and 2 Ministries has become a fixture in the lives of the homeless in Abbotsford for many reasons, not least of which are the twice-a-week meals they serve on Wednesdays and Saturday nights in Jubilee Park.
Photo: Abbotsford Drug War Survivors (DWS) Director Doug Smith (the smartest guy in the room) at Saturday night’s 5 and 2 Ministries meal in Jubilee Park. Doug was evicted from his camp Friday and moved to a new location in the ongoing Abbotsford Shuffle. Photo by Bas Stevens.
Pastor Ward Draper and Jesse Wegenast have become more than just a source for food they have become two of the lifelines homeless men and women in Abbotsford rely on for help, advocacy and prayer.
The 5 and 2 operates on a 24/7 basis acting as a liaison between the homeless and the services which are available for them and representatives who will speak on their behalf to the organizations within the power structure in Abbotsford which have come under such relentless fire in the last year as the Abbotsford Homeless Crisis has exposed the City of Abbotsford, the Abbotsford Police Department (APD), city councillors, churches and caregivers as powerless in dealing with the rising tide of homelessness in Abbotsford.
Abbotsford photographer Bas Stevens took these photos for Abbotsford Today of Saturday night’s 5 and 2 meal at Jubilee Park.
5 and 2 Ministries
First, an explanation of our name. The 5 and 2 is a biblical reference to the miracle of the five loaves and two fish, given in the Gospel of John (and additionally in the other three Gospels), which reports that five small barley loaves and two small fish supplied by a boy were used by Jesus to feed a multitude. It is the only miracle (apart from the resurrection) which is present in all four Gospels. The idea behind all of this is we must always remember no matter how small or insignificant the gift may seem, God will and does what he desires with them.
The symbolic representations behind the winged star in our logo is twofold first, the star represents Christ our Northern Star the one whom directs our steps and the wings are a reminder. A reminder that as we who follow the Lord:
“He gives strength to the weary and increases the power of the weak. Even youths grow tired and weary, and young men stumble and fall; but those who hope in the LORD will renew their strength. They will soar on wings like eagles; they will run and not grow weary, they will walk and not be faint.” Isaiah 40:29-31
Finally, the uniform. The 5 and 2 Ministries uniform reflects the military principles upon which The 5 and 2 is organized. The 5 and 2 Ministries Service Corps and Samaritan Division uniforms are visible expressions of dedication to community development and improvement which create numerous valuable opportunities to provide a helping hand to those in need and to lend a voice for the marginalized of our world by our distinct presence.
Additionally the uniforms for members of the Christian community communicate a few additional aspects of note. First The 5 and 2 Ministries uniform gives us a tangible way to speak without words to outwardly demonstrate the inner working of God’s grace in our lives.
The uniform also provides opportunities to communicate the Red Letters of Jesus by being recognized by our wardrobe choice. It is part of a sacramental expression. As we walk into a room or stroll down the street while wearing this simple uniform, we become a visible reminder that Jesus Christ is the hope of the world and upon this truth we stand.
The uniform serves as a witness to The 5 and 2’s commitment to serving God and humanity. The 5 and 2 uniform is a symbol of commitment, dedication, discipline, and a sign of availability and accessibility in times of need or crisis.
Furthermore, the wearing of our uniform links us as members of an intentional wing of the Church that is both intensely dedicated to social justice and carrying the message of Jesus.
Bas is the owner and photographer at MonoPod Photography.
You can follow Bas on Facebook where he publishes many of his photos.
To see more of Bas’ photos on Abbotsford Today click here
To see Bas’ photos of the homeless during Moving Day On Gladys Avenue click here
Bas Stevens lives in downtown Abbotsford and shares the neighbourhood just as readily with his neighbours with homes as he does with the homeless, the drug addicted and others who are down on their luck.
Bas has a home and is known to most in the power structure in Abbotsford as a man who calls things as he sees them and is very involved in his community and the political process which guides it.
You can find him most Wednesday nights over at Jubilee Park during The 5 and 2 Ministries meal for the homeless. Failing that, you catch him either at Legal Grounds Coffee House chewing the ear off of a politician or giving as good as he gets over at O’Neill’s Home Cooking over on Gosling.
You stand a good chance of finding him Saturday mornings over at the Abbotsford Farm and Country Market and Saturday evenings back over at Jubilee Park.
Wherever he is Bas usually has his eyes and ears wide open. We’re proud to have him as a contributor and urge you to get to know him if you give a damn about Abbotsford. You’ll be hard pressed to find anyone who cares more than he does.