Wolfgang Schmidt is a member of the Buckhorn Presbyterian Church congregation and plays the recorder and sackbut at Fort Collins Rescue Mission’s chapel services. He is a retired programmer from Kansas City, where he worked for the Kansas City Southern Railway. He is married, has two sons and lives near the foothills with his three horses, two dogs and three cats.

What inspired Buckhorn Presbyterian Church to get involved with Fort Collins Rescue Mission and provide the chapel services for its holiday banquets?

It’s hard to ignore the many homeless and poor of this city. They should not be ignored. The Mission gives our church a way to reach out to those experiencing homelessness and show them we care—that Jesus cares. Providing chapel services is a way every member of Buckhorn feels connected to our community.

Will you describe what the chapel services entail?

The 30-minute service starts with music, then continues with a short sermon by a minister from our congregation. This year, we’re planning to blend the music with short inspirational messages.

How have you seen the chapel services impact the Mission’s guests?

My favorite parts are before and after the service, when I talk to the guests. They may have been sleepy, hungry or distracted, but they come alive when someone pays attention to them.

How else has Buckhorn Presbyterian Church supported the Mission?

The cash donations from Buckhorn’s Christmas service often goes to the Mission. To the extent that the members of our congregation are able, they help serve food at the Easter, Thanksgiving and Christmas banquets.

How have you seen Fort Collins Rescue Mission impact the community, particularly during the holidays?

People near the Mission seem to feel that this is their place. Everyone has a place at the Mission’s table.

This post is a part of December’s Changing Lives Newsletter. This month features Preston’s journey of recovery and transformation in Steps to Success at Fort Collins Rescue Mission.