A Born Leader (Aleta Clark)
Updated: Jul 9, 2022
St. Luke 7:47 Wherefore I say unto thee, Her sins, which are many, are forgiven; for she loved much: but to whom little is forgiven, the same loveth little.
I begin this post using the scripture above with no pun intended. When I searched for what I believed the scripture read, I wasn't even aware that it read her sins! Too often we as a society attempt to dictate what a leader, or hero is and should look like. We discount people the more familiar we become with them, we see a person displaying human qualities as a weakness, instead of seeing their persistence as a strength.
I became aware of Aleta about 5 yrs ago through the internet. She was feeding who we call the homeless, but as we know through her to be "The Friends" inside of the Wentworth Police Station on 51rst and Wentworth. I was taken aback by her dedication to serving "the Friends" every night throughout the week. Usually people serve or feed homeless people once, which in itself is a blessing, but she dedicated herself to doing it every night for months at a time. When I found out she was using her own money by way of selling "Hugs No Slugs" T-shirts, I decided to express my admiration with my dollars.
By coincidence, one of my brothers in the Faith as well as a childhood friend Eric "Rico" Nance, had put together a men's leadership building group, and one of our outreach ministries became feeding "The Friends." It was a new experience for most of us. I had given money, or bought food for someone in need, but what Aleta did went far beyond surface giving. The thing that stands out the most about what she does is her interaction with everyone. No-one is better than anyone else, and if you try mistreating "The Friends," you'll find out how quickly she'll check you or ask you to leave. I've even witnessed her straighten a few officers out who tried to get slick, or not give her people the respect they deserve.
As a result of her diligence and commitment to the cause, volunteers have poured in, doors have opened, and platforms have been created to aide her with whatever's needed. But those of us that know her know's, she would have and still will continue to do it all alone if all of the support dried up tomorrow. Recently she's opened 10 safe houses where she serves entire communities with food, face masks, and whatever she can think of that's needed. She also runs a successful house cleaning service called FROM THE MUD CLEANING SERVICES. She describes herself as the rose that grew through the concrete, these days I see her as the rose that concrete is growing around! Englewood's Barbie
From The Mud Cleaning Service