the History of
Prophecy received during 1982 prayer session
The Cornerstone Foundation is a non-profit organization based in Rockville, Connecticut, a former textile mill city about 15 miles northeast of Hartford. The Foundation was started in 1982 by Helen Syriac, a local resident and parishioner at Sacred Heart Church in Vernon. She was so moved by the death of a homeless man, Vern Cook, that she decided to create a place for caring and sharing. She went to her Pastor, and asked him if they could use the church library as a shelter. "If one person was seeking shelter, there must be others," she reasoned. Her Pastor agreed, and the first shelter for the homeless in the Vernon area was opened at Sacred Heart Church. During the first year, 143 people were sheltered, many of whom were single mothers with children. This original shelter still exists today. Helen felt a strong urge to open a "drop-in" center in Rockville, to provide a Christian environment for those who needed a listening ear. She called a few friends, shared the vision, and prayed. An initial site was identified, and after praying for the start-up money, within a few hours a person called and offered a jar of coins he had saved for several years. It was the exact amount needed! From that humble beginning, The Cornerstone Foundation has become the multi-faceted community resource it is today.
Annual Scrooge Scramble held on Christmas Day
A message from our founder Helen Syriac
Dear Friends of Cornerstone,
I would like to share a couple of stories with you.
Lunch was over and I was closing the door to the soup kitchen when a little boy no more than five years old, who I will call Johnny, came running up to the door and said, ”are you still open?” I asked him “how can I help you?” Johnny responded by saying “I am hungry, can I have some food”? I asked him if was alone and he responded by saying he was with his daddy and little sister. As he was speaking his daddy and sister came around the corner of the building and joined Johnny. I want you to know that no matter what time of day it is when someone comes to the kitchen door of the soup kitchen and says, “I am hungry.” We will feed them.
I am happy to be able to share with you that even with the distraction of the pandemic and all the rules to be followed the work being done at the Cornerstone Shelter by our case worker Jennifer, five men and four women have been able to leave the shelter and move into their own apartment. There are always a few clients who find the shelter a safe haven and do not want to leave, but with the tender care received they move forward trusting there will be a brighter future.
Unable to host our guests internally because of the pandemic, during the past few month our kitchen staff and volunteers were able to provide thousands of nutritious bagged meals to those in need. Lunch and dinner were provided.
When I think of Johnny, his little sister and daddy, the men and woman from the shelter who now have their own apartment, the hundreds of people seeking food, I thank God for people like YOU, who made it possible to help those who come to us in their time of need.
One of my favorite sayings is from Mother Teresa’s “Meditations from A Simple Path.” The poor are hungry not only for food, they are hungry to be recognized as human beings. They are hungry for dignity and to be treated as we are treated. They are hungry for our love.”
Peace & Blessings
Cornerstone Foundation Inc.
"Truly, I say to you, as you did it to one of the least of these my brothers, you did it to me."