During a cold winter morning in 1981, the problems of the homeless were brought into stark perspective for the members of First Presbyterian Church in downtown San Antonio.
A homeless man, frozen to death, was found on the church grounds. In response, volunteers started a ministry in the church gymnasium to shelter and care for the growing number of homeless individuals.
By 1983 this program, having gained financial assistance of several downtown churches, was incorporated by 11 downtown congregations into San Antonio Metropolitan Ministry, Inc. (SAMMinistries).
Today SAMMinistries has a staff of more than 80 and is supported by thousands of volunteers who help families and individuals throughout San Antonio on their path to self-sufficiency.
Click here to learn about the SAMMinistries Leadership team.
We believe that each person is created in God’s image and is a unique expression of God’s love. Therefore all people should be treated with dignity and compassion and be given equal opportunity to make the most of their lives. We believe that volunteers are our greatest strength. Only with the help of volunteers, other service providers, government agencies, businesses and all those who care can we accomplish our mission.
We believe that a ministry to people in need demands our very best. In the same way that God expressed love in the creation of the world, our work is an expression of love and a manifestation of our faith. In striving for excellence, we honor the trust that has been given to us to act on behalf of the many who give us their prayers, their money, their time, and their hearts.
We strive to be true to our values in everything that we do so that what we live by will be as evident in our actions as it is in our words.
We believe that life on earth is a community, and it is our desire that all who come here will find a place of acceptance which mirrors God’s love for the world, be they helped or helping, in need or in need of giving. We welcome all who are in need regardless of who they are or what circumstances brought them to us. In the community of life, we are only as strong as the weakest among us, and, therefore, we believe that what we do for one benefit us all and builds a stronger community.
Whatever we are able to accomplish and whatever we are given is made possible only through the grace of God. We cherish the gifts that have been given to us to be used for a greater end and endeavor to be faithful stewards and use these gifts as they were intended, with diligence and care.
In our work, which is a ministry, we serve with gladness knowing that we are doing God’s will. We believe that faith is lived out in service to others. We welcome strangers: they may be angels unaware.
We believe that the most important thing we can do for the homeless is to offer hope, and the face of hope is a person who believes in them. From the ability to envision a different future comes the desire to make changes and the energy to do the work that change requires. We believe that, in the struggle that is life, we are here to help one another and to offer an alternative to despair is our highest calling. In times of tribulation, we offer a quiet faith and a candle to light the darkness.