This Sunday at 4:00 p.m., the family of BMPC choirs, along with the renowned Brandywine Brass, present its annual Christmas Concert. This concert, the third in this new season of “Concerts with a Cause,” will celebrate the Christmas season with the words of Mary’s “Magnificat” – My soul doth magnify the Lord. You’ll hear a spectacular setting of the Magnificat by Gerald Finzi, along with works by Franz Biebl, Paul Halley, Anton Bruckner, Johannes Brahms, William Dawson, and more. In the spirit of magnifying the Lord and in response to God’s incredible gift of love to each of us, 50 percent of the offering received at the concert will go to support Prevention Point Philadelphia.
Why Prevention Point?
Nearly 3 in 10 Philadelphia residents know someone who has died because of opioid use. Philadelphia has one of the highest drug death rates in the country, with more than 1,100 people dying of an overdose in 2018. Children of addicts are born addicted to opioids. Addicts sharing syringes contract HIV. The full impact of the crisis on the people and neighborhoods being affected is hard to comprehend.
The Kensington neighborhood, 15.2 miles from BMPC, has been hardest hit. In the June 27, 2019 edition of The Philadelphia Inquirer, an article about the challenges included: “The blocks on and around Kensington Avenue are still overwhelmed with drug sales and open drug use. People in active addiction sleep on the sidewalks, and the El rumbles overhead with more people coming to the neighborhood to buy and use drugs. Police have recently begun to more aggressively stop people from injecting in public. And neighbors took city officials to task at community meetings this week, saying they still feel trapped by dealers and gun violence on their blocks.”
I write not to depress you, but to let you know there is a way you can help address this crisis. Prevention Point saves lives by addressing individuals’ immediate needs, stabilizing their environment, and providing links to care and human connection. With more than 17,000 clients, they provide targeted overdose education, naloxone distribution, and needle exchange programs alongside access to care and social services, such as housing and community education. Your offering at Sunday’s concert will make a difference in this season of light, love and… need.