New leader completes his Mission

June, 28, 2013

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When the former self-described “yuppie” moved here from the East Coast two years ago, Eugene Mission Executive Director Jack Tripp realized he was naive.

“I didn’t know how truly desperate some people can get,” Tripp says.

The learning curve, he says, came with the suddenness of the Boston Marathon bombs going off: One moment you’re a well-heeled former Fortune 500 manager, the next minute listening to a man telling you how his parents once had discarded him in a trash bin.

“That’s the bomb going off for me,” says Tripp, who grew up in Boston and knew Boylston Street well. “You realize you might know how to sit behind a desk and raise money but know little about mental illness and about people with addictions who’ve done some really bad stuff.

“Forgiving them — that’s the easy part. The hard part is watching them try to forgive themselves.”

When you reap the harvest of your land, do not reap to the very edges of your field or gather the gleanings of your harvest. Leave them for the poor and for the foreigner residing among you. I am the LORD your God.
Leviticus 23:22