It was author George Whitman who wrote “Be not inhospitable to strangers, lest they be angels in disguise.” Just two days before Christmas, a Richmond priest decided to pay it forward and became an angel himself to several people. Father Jim Sichko, the pastor of St. Mark Church, took on a new role in downtown Lexington. In hand-me-down clothing, he transformed into a homeless man. Holding a sign that read, “Will you help? Give/Receive,” the pastor begged for change from people passing by. In return, anyone who gave him money immediately reaped the benefit of their kindness. Father Jim gave anyone who donated to him, $100. “Because of your goodness, you get 100 dollars,” Father Jim told those who gave him money. One of the many who gave change to the beggar in disguise, was homeless himself. Even though he was in need, the homeless man gave Father Jim a precious 50 cents. He was almost brought to tears by the turn of tide. “I’ve been on the street eight years,” the homeless man told the priest. With this random act of kindness, Father Jim had one wish and blessing to those he encountered. “May you know the merciful face of Christ,” he blessed.
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