Palmer Memorial Episcopal Church

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Harvey Hugs

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The Palmer Place Apartments Ministry has given security and comfort to countless individuals over the years by providing clean, safe, affordable and convenient housing to patients and their families who come to Houston for crucial medical care in the Texas Medical Center. But in the dark, stressful days of Storm Harvey, former patients and their families turned the tables when they reached out themselves to Palmer Place ministers with thoughtful calls offering love and support.

Almost 50 former patients and their families called Palmer Place during the storm to make sure Palmer Church, Palmer Place ministers, and patients and their families staying in the apartments were safe from the wind and waters of Harvey.  Below is a photo of a former Palmer Place resident flying a Texas flag outside their home in support during Harvey.

 A former Palmer Place resident flies a Texas flag outside their home in support during Harvey.

“Each one wanted to know how we were doing,” said Sandra Begalke, who leads the ministry. “Each of those calls felt like a hug. The emotional support from these people during those frightening days was such a comfort.”

Palmer has operated the Palmer Place Apartments Ministry for 17 years, serving more than 350 patients and their families who come from outside Houston, and often outside Texas and the United States, to seek advanced care for their illnesses. The ministry manages the rental of six apartments, cleaning and furnishing the units and welcoming patients and their families when they come into town. The volunteers who collect the rent often do much more, taking the time to sit and visit with the people they care for, people who are often in great need of a person who will listen to their stories with compassion.

It is a pastoral ministry that offers support for people when they need it most. During Harvey, when Houstonians needed it most, the compassion and support came flowing back to Palmer.

“Palmer Place is one prime example of community outreach from Palmer Church living into our mission ‘to know and share the love of Jesus Christ’," Sandra said. “Those phone calls during such an emotional time were a return of that love to all of us. We all are blessed.”

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