"Father, I have X in my car, he has just got out of prison, I've got a tent, he stay in your garden".
I screw up my face, hunch my shoulders saying "no" but not wanting to mouth the word.
X has been in prison dozens of time, he drinks, he takes drugs, he steals, he can get violent. In his childhood he was unloved, and most probably unwanted, moving from institution to institution. He has lived in my garden before, the garden is tiny, he lived around the corner of a bay of the house, I didn't notice until the smell of human waste became overpowering.
What would Our Lady do? She wouldn't refuse the poor. Well I didn't actually say the word, "No!"
Lawrence gives the lead to a story in the Argus in which one of our rough sleepers was sheltering in a rubbish bin and was nearly crushed to death.
We don't know how to deal with people who don't fit in, if they are mad they can be institutionalised, if the criminal they can be imprisoned, if they are poor they end up on our streets. If they are like X the bounce around the system like something on a pinball table.