We are still in the grip of the “beast from the east” as I write and it has come bringing the unpleasantness and danger of sub-zero temperatures and biting winds. St Albans in the snow is very pretty particularly from the warmth of a heated car or centrally heated home. It is a time of real hardship and danger for the homeless however. I see that Open Door which provides support and shelter for the homeless is over 20 years old and looking to expand its services. I well remember that my wife and I were volunteers during the early stages and my wife continued to serve there for a number of years. This winter an initiative came to fruition to start a night shelter in Hatfield (where our church is now based) which surprisingly has never had one before.   A borrowed church and around 100 volunteers both across the churches and non-church have enabled 10 beds and meals to be provided seven days a week through the winter until the end of March. We are a large number of very different people united through a common concern. How timely this has all been with the “beast from the east”. I am reminded that it was also wise men that came from the east. Rather than unpleasantness and danger they brought precious gifts for a homeless child that would one day bring hope to everyone whether housed or homeless and regardless of their background.