December 19th, 2010
On Hatteberg's People, at Christmas time people always come forward to help the homeless. But there are others who are helping year-round, but you don't hear much about them. In the last four years two different groups with the same goal formed an alliance that can be seen every Sunday in the alleys of downtown Wichita.
On the other side of life's tracks in downtown Wichita, it is a bitterly cold Sunday noon. A truck and a bus sat in a vacant lot next to those tracks.
"We show up with clothes and gloves and hats, a warm meal, friendship, and they are just overwhelmed with gratitude."
That's 'Stubby' Hultman talking....he's one of those in a leather jacket that says Diakanos on the back. Diakanos is Greek meaning 'one who serves'.
"Thank you God for this meal. Let's eat! Women and children first."
Stubby is the president of Diakanos. During the week he runs a truck repair business and Bar B-Q on N. Broadway. Stubby is Ken Hultman...but no one knows him by that name. He's been riding motorcycles since he was 13. Four years ago he decided to hand out coats to the homeless downtown...that has morphed into this.
"You experience it for the first time and you might feel a bit uncomfortable, but once you experience the gratitude inside that you've helped someone, it really puts things in a different perspective."
"Why are we here, we are here to worship and honor God."
A ministry called 'Church on the Street' melded together with the Diakanos members, they provide the food and a short church service and Diakanos provides the bus and truck plus the coats to hand out.
Deborah Jones who is founder of 'Church on the Street' ministry.
"The church building is wherever we are. We have no building whatsoever, it's just the people."
Now you should know that Stubby has an MBA and a bachelors degree in Science of Management. He's also been a flight instructor and has a commercial pilot's license. But it is his work with the homeless that motivates him now.
"Possible they are standing at a fork in the road wondering which fork they should take --- maybe I'm that catalyst."
"Our underlying mission is to save souls. We'd like to lift them up and out to get jobs."
Both organizations are made up of people who have other jobs...but every Sunday, the feel no job is more important than being near the tracks in an alley, where there is always one more train, and one more soul to feed.
Jones, "It's my ministry, it's what God called me to do."
Stubby, "It gives you that warm feeling inside that I've made a difference in someone's life."
Jones, "It's my life, it's all I want to do."
Stubby, "You find something inside you that you didn't know you had."