Louene (Weber ’65) Rattray & Rev. Walter Rattray ’69
What began in 1978 as a call to Louene (Weber ’65) and Rev. Walter Rattray ’69 to reach out to the destitute on the inner city streets of Phoenix has developed into a multifaceted organization of service encompassing an inner city church, two missions and residential programs for both men and women.
For the past 25 years, the Rattrays have served as pastors of Church on the Street with its extensive outreaches to the poor, the homeless and the incarcerated. The church provides temporary shelter and basic provisions for homeless men and women. After a 10-day stay, some transfer to the working men’s facility, others apply for the residential discipleship program, while others are assisted in finding more permanent housing.
The outreach of the Rattrays is extensive: their missions, shelters and residential programs house more than 230 persons simultaneously. The church provides clothing for all residents in the programs and missions and serves approximately 30,000 hot meals a month to the poor and homeless. In addition, food boxes are prepared and distributed to the needy. As well as their work with the poor and homeless, the Rattrays minister to the imprisoned. Walt serves as voluntary auxiliary chaplain for both the county jail and Perryville State Prison while Louene assists with services to women inmates and teaches weekend seminars through Chuck Colson’s Prison Fellowship Ministries.
The Rattrays, who have touched the lives of so many, are always reminded of the Lord’s words as recorded in Matthew 25, “I tell you the truth, whatever you did to one of the least of these brothers of mine, you did for me.”