In the Book of Genesis (Chp 18: 1-15) at the Oaks of Mamre, Abraham welcomes three strangers and provided food and rest to them. These strangers turned out to be angels sent by God with a message that Sarah (Abraham’s wife) will be with child in her old age.
We wanted Mamre Oaks to be a place:
(1) of hospitality, welcome and acceptance for the adult with IDD (intellectual and developmental disability) just as the angels, though strangers, are welcomed and given a place to rest by Abraham
(2) to nourish, nurture and provide meaningful engagement for the adult with IDD, just as the angels were given food and water by Abraham to strengthen and to empower them on their journey
(3) of good news for the aging parents of the adult with IDD just as Sarah embraced the miracle of bearing a child at her old age
(4) of hope that the impossible is made possible, by the grace of God.
Mamre Oaks is a symbol of growth, of being and becoming a Tree of Life that is life giving to all who comes to her.
SPirituality & Inspiration
The inspiration comes from the community that the pioneers belong to: Faith & Light community. It is an international organization comprising communities made up of persons with IDD, their families and friends, particularly young friends, to meet together on a regular basis in a Christian and inter-faith spirit, to share friendship, pray, fiesta and celebrate life.
In addition, Faith & Light’s mission is to reveal to each person their unique gift and beauty, creating bonds of friendship between each other so that families with a person with IDD no longer feel alone. In the church, Faith and Light believes that the person with IDD is a sign of the most fragile and often the most rejected people and are at the heart of the Church.
This is very much in line with the principles of the Catholic Social Teaching, especially the dignity of the human person and solidarity.