The last time I saw Mona was when we were in MacArthur Park, at one of Fred Jordan Mission’s community outreaches. A woman ran up to me, with her arms outstretched, but she had aged so much that I hardly recognized her. But when you know the story of her life and her family, it’s no surprise.
Mona was a single mother, abandoned by her husband, the father of several of her children. Homeless, they ended up in Tent City, which was a dusty, open field, along with drug pushers, prostitutes, hardened criminals and child molesters. Then she was back on the streets, her son joined a gang, shot a little girl, and ended up in jail.
Mona gave one of her babies to her ex-husband, because he lives in a filthy welfare flophouse and she figured that was better, since the baby had a roof over his head, at least. She continued living on the street with her 13-year-old unmarried, mentally challenged daughter who doesn’t even know who fathered her baby. Mona gave birth to another child, and watched that baby die in her arms when he was 3-weeks-old in her arms in her cardboard box home on the sidewalk. That has been Mona’s life!
Her son, Chris, got job, had managed to stay out of a gang, but is back in prison again, for drug possession, Mona told me, as she handed me a beautiful little baby girl. “This is Chris’s baby,” she said, then she introduced me to his wife, a lovely young woman. Her mentally-challenged daughter now has a second baby, and Mona is looking after them all.
But the bottom line was even more tragic. “I’m dying of cancer,” Mona told me, “and I finally realize that only God can help us, like you’ve told me all these years, so I’ve come to you. Willie, will you pray for me and for my family?”
I wish you could have been there in that inner-city park as we all hugged and prayed. And once again, God’s love cast out fear in hearts and minds.
Please keep praying for Mona, for her children and for her grandchildren. I know this is not a happy ending but folks, Mona’s story is not a make-believe-Hollywood-movie! This is life here in the inner city. This is where God has called us to minister. Thank you for standing with us in compassion and in the love of God.
Please help us touch more hurting people with the simple message that JESUS SAVES! He is the only answer for all the Mona’s in this world!
Willie Jordan (Mrs. Fred Jordan)