In 1977, Mother Mary Blossom and Father Gregory Reynolds moved from Tennessee to Cleveland, OH to set up a monastery originally sponsored by the Ukrainian Orthodox Church (USA) and to serve the urban poor. They created St. Herman’s, a mission serving the poor and hungry; a House of Hospitality patterned after the Catholic worker tradition, with a special Orthodox influence. St. Herman’s grew over the years, blessed by support from the Orthodox community and others.
Now, 35 years later, the mission of St. Herman’s continues, and has recently been refocused and rejuvenated with support from the 20-plus local Orthodox Churches in the area and broad support from the local community. The Greater Cleveland Council of Orthodox Clergy nominated a Board of Trustees, which has representation from eight local Orthodox Churches as well as other religious institutions and professionals from the area.
St. Herman’s fills an important gap in services for the local community – feeding the hungry and providing short term shelter for men. The primary mission of St. Herman’s is to feed the hungry. In 2011, St. Herman’s provided almost 70,000 hot meals. St. Herman’s is one of the only local hunger centers that provide a hot meal 3 times a day, 365 days a year. Meals are served and prepared by residents and volunteers. Additionally, toward the end of the month, St. Herman’s provides food bags containing 4-5 days worth of food for those in need if their governmental assistance or other funds have run out.
St. Herman’s also provides temporary shelter for homeless men. In addition to shelter, St. Herman’s provides a hot shower and new clothing to men in need. St. Herman’s offers medical screening services and importantly, Church services (prayers) are offered daily at 5:30 am and 4:00 pm.
As we look to the future of St. Herman’s we are evaluating our programs and services, and wish to remain a beacon of hope to those in need, and a strong example of Orthodoxy to all. We are eternally grateful for the many blessings we have received – strong support from the area Orthodox parishes and from the local community and we humbly ask for your prayers in support of the mission of St. Herman’s.
Visit St. Herman website.