There are many reasons we all support Room At The Inn. For many women, especially mothers, it is easy for them to put themselves “in the shoes” of those women who find themselves needing a home like Room At The Inn. For fathers it is more difficult to relate to those women needing shelter, but our desire to see such a place be successful rises from a different viewpoint. For me, and I’m sure for many other husbands and fathers, my emotional support for the Inn comes from picturing my own family in need. Nothing pulls at a man’s soul like picturing his wife and children in dire need and struggling without his support. That thought alone draws every man present at the banquet to sympathize at a very deep level with the women and children supported by Room At The Inn.

Most of these women do not have the support of a strong man in their lives. They do not have their “St. Joseph” to help them search for shelter. Can you imagine Mary, ready to give birth to Jesus, being turned away from room after room all without the perseverance of St. Joseph? Can you picture Mary and Jesus fleeing to Egypt and establishing a new life there without the help of St. Joseph? The nativity story would have been very different from the one we know; it would have illustrated Mary suffering without the support that she so desperately needed at that time.

Though these pregnant and young women are in need, we as fathers also recognize the amazing amount of courage each of them has. And this is where the virtue of hope comes in—each of these women are driven by hope, much like we would want our own wives to be in the same situation. Room At The Inn gives these courageous young women a place where that hope can blossom and grow. Mothers and fathers alike recognize that the greatest sign and symbol of hope is their own children. So many of our thoughts, emotions, and dreams are poured into these young souls, and that, ultimately, is why I as a father will always support Room At The Inn—whether it’s through prayer, my time as a table host, financial donations or all of the above. It gives those young mothers a place to find a happy, hopeful future for themselves and most especially for the children that they so clearly love. Father Jacques Philippe says, “The greatest act of charity one can do for others is to encourage them in faith and hope.” This is the mission of Room At The Inn.
—Larry Henson

Photo: Larry with his beautiful wife Kelly and their four children