Breaking Down the Walls: Warehouse Facilitator Mike Casertano

Everyday Mike prays a quick prayer. “Prepare hearts before me, and give me divine appointments.”

As Warehouse Facilitator, Mike receives all of your donated goods.

And this season is especially busy. Over the holidays we get an outpouring of support as people bring in their “non-perishables” and donated goods. As you can imagine, it take a lot of donations to prepare food three times a day for our guests—not to mention stocking up our Outreach Center where our community can come for some support and groceries for the week. When you drop off food (or other goods) Mike is the one who makes sure it gets where it needs to go so that everyone is fed and cared for!

Whats YOUR Story?

But what stands out about Mike is that no matter what he does, Mike keeps his eye on the real goal of Water Street: ministering to people, and sharing the love of Christ.

Even while driving the forklift, collecting donations in the box truck or sorting and orchestrating donated goods, Mike is open and ready to be there for anyone God might be bringing to him.

He starts by building trust.

With a warm smile and friendly hello, it’s easy to feel comfortable around Mike. Slowly, he tries to get to know the people around him so when God brings him the right moment, he can ask, “what’s your story?”

 “God showed me that years ago…we all have a story, and it’s all a part of His story…and it’s all important.”

Sometimes these moments come from working alongside guests who are helping him collect and sort donated goods. Instead of getting so wrapped up in the task in front of him that he ignores the people he’s working with, Mike tries to use each interaction as a chance to build community.

To Mike, that means trying to “be real,” about his own life. “A lot of times we hide behind things because it’s tough being vulnerable,” Mike explains. By opening up about his own life and walk with Christ—Mike breaks down the walls between him and our guests. And through his genuine, honest nature, Mike gets to be a part of many restoration stories here at Water Street. “We talk, we share our lives together. There are times where we’ve cried together, we’ve prayed together,” Mike attests.

Even though Mike plays a key role in making sure everyone here at Water Street is fed and provided for, he knows that in the end, we each need so much more than food and shelter. When he prays, he prays not only that Water Street has everything it needs, but for these “divine appointments” with guests so that he can share his hope and joy with others!

He said to his disciples, “The harvest is great, but the workers are few. So pray to the Lord who is in charge of the harvest; ask him to send more workers into his fields.” Matthew 9:37-38