Guest Contributor | The Rev. Dr. Anna S. Pearson, Rector

08.13.21 | Community, International, Pulpit Posts, World

            I am away on vacation as you read this, so please enjoy this poem and a brief explanation if it by Dakota poet and English Professor Gwen Westerman:

Give-Away Song
This is my give-away—
                  not because I don’t want
                  it anymore,
                  not because it’s out of
                  style or
                  broken or
                  useless since it lost
                  its lid or one of its buttons,
                  not because I don’t understand
                  the “value” of things.
This is my give-away—
                  because I have enough
                  to share with you
                  because I have been given
                  so much
                  health love happiness
                  pain sorrow fear
                  to share from the heart
                  in a world where words can be
                  meaningless when they come
                  only from the head.
This is my give-way—
                  to touch what is good in you
                  with words your heart can hear
                  like ripples from a pebble
                  dropped in water
                  moving outward growing
                  wider touching others.
                  You are strong.
                  You are kind.
                  You are beautiful.
This is my give-away.
      Wopida ye.
            Wopida ye.
                 Wopida ye.

“‘Give-Away Song’ honors our Dakota value of generosity and sharing whatever we have with those around us. This poem is also a response to the missionaries and Indian agents who often reported that our ancestors did not know the value of things that the government provided them—blankets, flour, meat, food, tools, other supplies—and that when those goods were distributed, the people would immediately share with others who did not have as much as they did. But I think our ancestors did know exactly the value of things and that value only comes when you can share.” — Gwen Westerman

Rev. Dr. Anna S. Pearson

Rev. Dr. Anna S. Pearson


Stay current on activity at the Soup Kitchen, guest stories, thoughts from Clergy, news and events.

Subscribe to receive the latest news, events, volunteer opportunities, and more — right to your inbox.

Church of the Holy Apostles

We are an open, inclusive Christian Church celebrating in the Episcopal tradition.

Sunday Service is held 11AM (on site and via livestream). Weekday services are held on Zoom.


For Newcomers

Learn about our faith community and explore ways to connect with our work and worship.


Reflections on Holy Scripture from our Clergy.


Founded in 1844, with a focus on social activism and the desire for social justice.

Clergy, Staff & Vestry

The Vestry is the governing body of the Church of the Holy Apostles.


Music commands a strong presence at the Church of the Holy Apostles.

Space Rental

Host your next meeting or event in our landmark building.

Soup Kitchen & Pantry

Nourishing hungry New Yorkers since 1982 in an atmosphere of respect and hospitality.

Daily meal service

Serving a free, nutritious meal every weekday from 10:30 am to 12:30 pm.

Meal outreach

Distributing bagged breakfasts and lunches throughout Chelsea and Hell’s Kitchen.

About the soup kitchen

Learn more about our mission, our history, our performance, who we are, and what we do.

Pantry Program

Providing fresh and nutritious groceries to food-insecure New Yorkers.

Sunday Supper

Bridging generations and building community over a monthly family style meal.

Give Layers of Love this Winter

Help Keep Our Guests Warm this Winter.

Social Support

Meeting basic needs, stabilizing lives, and supporting individuals and families to achieve their goals.


Addressing the needs of the whole person through basic needs, counseling, and referrals.


Offering learning and skill-building opportunities.

Community Partnership

Partnering with others to expand the services offered to our guests.

Get Involved

Holy Apostles is a great place to channel your time, talents and generosity for good.


Make a difference in the lives of New Yorkers experiencing homelessness and hunger.


Join our efforts to serve others and provide for people who are vulnerable.


Your gift provides food, community, and hope to New Yorkers in need.

The Latest

Stay up-to-date on all happenings at Holy Apostles.

Food For The Soul

The official blog of Holy Apostles Soup Kitchen.

Voices of Our Community

Guest stories, poetry, and more.


See our calendar of events.

Church Pulpit Posts

Read weekly meditations written by our clergy.


Holy Apostles in the news.