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Using song and worship to reach homeless and others on the streets

David Molyneux and Hugh Latif play gospel music, serve refreshments and offer words of hope to the homeless and others.

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The donors: David Molyneux and Hugh Latif

The gift: Bringing music and worship to homeless people

The cause: The Followers Mission in Toronto

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Hugh Latif has been playing the guitar for more than 40 years as a hobby and he used to jam for fun with his friend, David Molyneux.

After one session, Mr. Molyneux asked if Mr. Latif would join him in playing music at a weekly men's group meeting at the Followers Mission church. The church is in a rough part of Toronto's downtown and it reaches out to homeless people, prostitutes and drug addicts. "I went once on a Thursday evening for a couple of hours and I got hooked on it," said Mr. Latif, a management consultant and author.

That was three years ago and ever since, Mr. Latfi and Mr. Molyneux, who is a Toronto-based architect, have been singing and worshiping with a group of men at the church Thursday nights. They play gospel music, serve refreshments and offer words of hope. Sometimes only a handful of men show up and their problems can seem overwhelming. But over the years, Mr. Latif says he has seen people turn their lives around. "You feel good about saving people from where they were, because they are caught into a net and they can't get out of it," he said. "When they see just brotherly love and singing, they get encouraged."

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About the Author
European Correspondent

Paul Waldie has been an award-winning journalist with The Globe and Mail for more than 10 years. He has won three National Newspaper Awards for business coverage and been nominated for a Michener Award for meritorious public service journalism. He has also won a Sports Media Canada award for sports writing and authored a best-selling biography of the McCain family. More


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