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Hope for the
In Southwestern PA since 1941

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Who we are

City Mission is a Christ-centered rehabilitative homeless shelter.  We facilitate the transformation of those who have descended into homelessness, hunger and despair by providing food, shelter, case management, Christian based counseling, and life-changing programming.  Our goal is to help each person who walks through our doors to become a healthy, productive member of society.

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a beautiful little girl stares at her empty plate

What we do

The City Mission offers two branches of service - Compassionate Care and our Life Recovery Program. Compassionate Care reaches out to those most in need by offering basic services such as meals, shelter, and medical care.  The Life Recovery Program assists men, women, and children who are in crisis and looking for life transformation.  Our philosophy is to meet people where they are and to lead them towards their God-given purpose.

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Way to Help

What you can do

City Mission’s work is only possible by the community and businesses of Southwestern Pennsylvania’s generous donation of time and treasure.  If you, your business, or church would like to be part of bringing hope to those hurting in our region, or partner with us to deliver the same - please take action today.

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5 youthful volunteers in the cafeteria alongside CEO Dean Gartland
Our Mission
For over 80 years, City Mission has shared Christ, sheltered, healed, and restored the homeless to independent living—without discrimination.  City Mission’s comprehensive program addresses both short-term needs like food and shelter, and long-term needs, including drug and alcohol counseling, mental health and medical treatment, legal aid, and employment training.  Our goal is to help each man, woman, mother with children, or veteran who walks through our doors to become a healthy, productive member of society.  With your help, we help our residents renew their lives.
3 male City Mission Resident give a group hug
female resident
mother with 2 children
Women & Children
group of 5 male veterans in discussion group
Program Overview
Our Impact
Our goal for each person who comes to City Mission is for them to move from a life of crisis, to a healthy, productive and thriving life.  Because of your generosity, City Mission made a real impact in the community, giving hope to those who are hungry and homeless and come to our doors for help.
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Nights of Shelter
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People Served
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Medical Services
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What Our Residents Say

Amanda, female resident
"City Mission is where I finally learned that life isn't totally about me. When I began to put others first, I attained a peace that I never had before."
Former Mission Resident
Randy, former resident
“The Mission gives you the opportunity to get right with the Lord and truly change your life. I’m learning to love myself the way God loves me.”
City Mission Resident
kevin, resident
“This time last year, I was depressed, but today I have hope.  The Mission is a place of restoration.  A place of giving life to the lifeless.”
City Mission Resident
matt, former resident
“When I had nowhere else to go, their doors were open.  They took me in graciously. They’ve given me hope.  I’ve gotten my confidence and dignity back."
Former Resident
Nikki, former resident
“The Mission is a miracle for me. It has offered and given me so much.  There’s everything here you could need to get on your feet and start over.”
Former Mission Resident
Nikki, former resident
“I’m finally happy.  Happy that I restored my relationship with the Lord.  It’s definitely better when you have God on your side.”
Former Mission Resident
Renee, former resident
“The gratitude I have in my heart for this place is indescribable.  It is always going to be apart of my life.  City Mission is forever engraved on my heart.”
Former Mission Resident
Jeff, resident
"City Mission has done wonders for me. It’s really been a God-send. As a vet, it takes me a while to trust people. But God is love, and the City Mission is love."
City Mission Resident

Latest News from the Mission

Our News Articles provide information on all manner of topics related to the City Mission.  Our Subject areas include:  Events; Resident Stories; Our Donors; Newsletter Repository; and Knowledge Share.  Knowledge Share engages a host of topics regarding homelessness, addiction and poverty.  Below you will find an opportunity to be “in-the-know” by being on our email list.  You will also find our most recent news pulled together for you below.  Checkout the "Podcast" section of our Knowledge Share articles page!

"A Place Where Change Can Happen"

Volunteer Manager
April 12, 2024

During National Volunteer Month, we would like to give a special thank you to our incredible family of volunteers. Without all of you, we would not be able to offer all the resources and services that we offer to our residents. By volunteering at City Mission, you are helping to transform lives. Today, if you haven’t already met our new-ish Volunteer Manager, Amanda Blakemore, I would like to introduce you to her. She started at City Mission last October and has successfully navigated through her first Thanksgiving, Christmas, Sweet Sunday, and Easter volunteer seasons. Amanda has proven to be a great asset to our team. She is friendly and compassionate and warm. She communicates clearly and empathetically, and she works extremely hard. Here are some fun facts to help you get to know her a little bit better… 1. Before coming to City Mission, Amanda’s favorite job was as a music teacher in an elementary school. She did that for 10 years. And occasionally, she shares her musical talents with us here at City Mission by singing in our chapel worship services. 2. She listens to all kinds of different music, but Lauren Daigle is one of favorites. 3. Her favorite food is crab legs…or maybe sushi. 4. Her best vacation was a solo trip to Sedona, AZ and the Grand Canyon. She explained, “Just quiet time with God in the beautiful and vast wilderness.” 5. Her dad, Taylor, was a fighter pilot in the Navy and an Ironman triathlete into his sixties. When Amanda was little, she traveled all over the country for triathlons and other long-distance events. Here’s what Amanda had to stay about City Mission… “My favorite thing about City Mission is the people -- staff, residents, and volunteers. I have never been at a place where I experience so much love, and I know that Jesus is working here.” “I think the thing that surprised me most about City Mission was just the size and extent of the operations here. I did not expect a homeless shelter to be such a big, beautiful campus. I was also surprised by how much City Mission offers the residents that live here. It is truly a place where change can happen, because people are given the tools and support they need to succeed and return to independent living.”

Clean Slate Day

Brian Gorman, Executive Director of Summit Legal Aid
April 12, 2024

Summit Legal Aid, Washington County’s nonprofit legal aid organization, partnered with the Washington County Bar Association and City Mission for Clean Slate Day on Friday, April 12 in the City Mission Dining Hall.Clean Slate Day allows individuals with criminal charges or convictions to meet with volunteer attorneys and pardon coaches for free to find out if they are eligible for pardons, expungements, or sealing their records. Volunteer legal professionals will review case information and assist with the application process.“A criminal record is a very real barrier to employment for our residents,” said City Mission Manager of Career Services, Brianna Kadlecik. “And sustainable employment is a vital piece of the puzzle for them to get back to independent living.”But a clean slate does not just help with employment. Kadlecik has seen criminal records create barriers for our residents to obtain housing, financial aid for education, and even a driver’s license – all things that could help to clear a path for them to a better life. “It’s a beautiful thing,” Kadlecik said of the Clean Slate Day event. “Residents who have attended in the past have been able to get answers to things they didn’t think they would ever be able to get answers to.” For Brian Gorman, the Executive Director of Summit Legal Aid, Clean Slate Day is about giving people a second chance. “Everybody who comes here is looking to better themselves in some way,” he explained. “They’re looking for a job or a higher-income job. They could also be trying to go to school or to obtain housing, and their criminal record is preventing them from achieving those goals. So it not only gives people hope and redemption, but it also gives them tangible things that can help them create a better life.”

Happy Volunteer Month

City Mission Chapel
April 5, 2024

Welcome to National Volunteer Month! Our family of volunteers is an absolutely essential part of our ministry to serve those in need and to restore the homeless to independence. “For just as each of us has one body with many members, and these members do not all have the same function, 5 so in Christ we, though many, form one body, and each member belongs to all the others.” Romans 12:4-5 (Link to Bible Gateway for full chapter: Together, we all make up the body of Christ, carrying out His work for the “least of these” here in this world, and we are so incredibly grateful for those who dedicate their time, talent, and treasure to support our Mission. Last year we had… 23,011 total volunteer hours 1,918 volunteer hours on average per month 27 locations on and off campus for volunteers to serve in Volunteering has many benefits… For the Community Volunteering at City Mission supports the most vulnerable in our community – those who are suffering and in need. Those we serve are working hard to restore their lives and overcome all the barriers that led them to homelessness. The more love and support they receive while they are here boosts their confidence, gives them hope that their lives can improve, and encourages them to keep working to transform their lives. “The most important thing is the caring relationships that develop between volunteers and residents,” said Jason Johnson, Manager of Support Services at City Mission. “It shows the residents that people genuinely care about them. That builds their self-esteem. You can’t create that. You can’t build a lesson plan for that. That’s just God being God. That’s the beauty of it.” For Physical and Mental Health Studies (link to Mayo Clinic blog post: show that volunteering can reduce stress and anxiety, increase positive and relaxed feelings, lead to lower rates of depression, and provide a sense of meaning and purpose – all of which can lead to better overall wellness and alleviate physical health issues like heart disease and stroke. Volunteering also helps you to get out of your comfort zone, learn new skills, and have exciting, new experiences – all of which help to promote general wellness. For Building Relationships Volunteering can grow your network of friends by helping you to meet passionate people who share similar interests – people who you might not otherwise have had a chance to meet. It can build stronger bonds among families and friend groups by creating positive and lasting shared memories. Volunteering also helps to develop a kind of “social trust” within a community by demonstrating that even in this fast-paced world full of distractions and personal responsibilities, there are still compassionate people who are genuinely working to make the world a better place. Conclusion Volunteerism, especially sustained volunteering on an on-going basis can little by little help to make the world a better place. It helps to improve the lives both of those who are being served and of those who serve. Volunteering at City Mission can work to enhance our programming, shower our residents with care and compassion, and improve the state of our community one soul at a time! To learn more about volunteering at City Mission, please visit:

"Never Going Back"

Michael at City Mission
March 22, 2024

“I was beat down, sleeping in a tent, drinking. I had nowhere to go, no pupose to continue living,” said Michael, a current City Mission resident. “I was drinking myself into submission, and that was alright with me. That’s what I did all my life…Then, I saw a sign on a bus that said ‘City Mission, Hope for the Homeless.’” Before he came to City Mission, Michael was living in a tent near the Wild Things stadium in Washington. Alcohol had derailed his life. He had just lost his job, the only lifeline he had left. His daughter hadn’t spoken to him in months. So he got on a bus to head back to Pittsburgh, with no real idea what he was going to do next, when he saw a flyer that said, “City Mission: Hope for the Homeless.” He asked the bus driver about us, and the bus he was riding actually had a stop at the Mission. So Michael got off the bus and sat out front on his cooler of beer in front of our chapel, drinking up the courage to ask for help. “When you’re in addiction, you don’t like to ask for help,” he explained. Before long, Jared Nolan, City Mission’s RSS Supervisor, and Dave Green, our Men’s Intake Coordinator, came out and asked him if he needed anything. “Jared and Dave saved my life,” Michael said. When he came to City Mission, he was expecting a dark, open area filled with cots and a rowdy bunch of drunk guys fighting over stuff. But when he came to the Mission, he found a place filled with light. “It wasn’t what I expected at all,” he explained. “There were dorms with sober people who were offering to help me out rather than take what I had. People came up to me and said, ‘if you need anything, let me know.’” He didn’t have many clothes, so the Mission let him go through a donation bin and pick out anything he wanted. Later, he was given a clothing voucher to pick out whatever he needed at our Thrift Store. “I wasn’t sure I was gonna stay. I didn’t have anything,” he said. “But the Mission took care of me. They got me food, hygiene products, a bed, a hot shower, everything I needed.” The Mission took care of him, so he stayed. Michael grew up in Carnegie the youngest of five kids, being raised by a single Mom. His dad left the family shortly after he was born. When he was 12, his mom sent him away to boarding school in Hershey, PA, where he lived for four years, going to school and working on a dairy farm that helped to produce the milk for Hershey’s chocolate. His mom sent him away to school so that he would have a better start in life than his older brothers. Unfortunately, when he was 16, he started drinking alcohol, because his friends at school were doing it. He left the school and moved back home, but his mom was busy working all the time, so he was left on his own a lot. He did get a job working for a roofing company. He worked really hard, and he made good money. He continued to do that work for more than two decades. He worked hard, and then he drank hard as a way of celebrating his hard work. In 2004, he met his wife, and they had a baby together. He loved being a dad. “Deep inside, I always wanted a family,” he said. “When my daughter was born, I thought a lot about her future. There were things I thought about back then that I really wanted to become a reality.” In 2018, his wife left, and he became a single dad. In 2020, when the COVID lockdown happened, he was laid off from his job, and he started receiving unemployment. At the same time, his daughter was home from school, learning remotely. He had nothing to do but sit home and drink, so that’s what he did all the time, every day. When his unemployment benefits dried up, he tried to go back to work, but he couldn’t quit drinking, so he couldn’t hold down any jobs. Eventually, there were no roofing companies left that would hire him. His daughter moved out when she graduated high school, because she couldn’t stand to be around his drinking. He lost his house and started living on friends’ couches. Eventually, he ended up living in a tent in Washington, PA. After he came to City Mission, he started seeing things differently. “I never considered myself very likeable,” he explained. “I just thought I was a bad person. I tried to hide from people my whole life. City Mission is teaching me I can love myself. I do have purpose. I just have to work on it to better myself. I’m never gonna be perfect, but if I just keep working on it, I can be a good person that people can trust, that people can count on.” Last November, he missed his daughter’s birthday. She hadn’t spoken to him and didn’t really want him around. It was incredibly hard for Michael, because he had never missed her birthday before. When Christmastime rolled around, City Mission House Coordinator, Matt Chase, asked him what he was going to get for his daughter for Christmas. “Nothing,” he answered. “I don’t have anything to give her.” Matt took him up to the City Mission attic where we store all of our donations that can’t be used right away. Michael picked out a whole bag full of Christmas gifts he thought she would like. “How are you going to get it to her,” Matt asked. “I don’t know,” Michael told him. “I know where she works, but I don’t have any way to get there.” The next morning, Matt drove him to Carnegie. She wasn’t at work that day, but he was able to leave the presents there for her. The next morning, she video-called him on the phone to tell him thank you and to say she was sorry for not talking to him and that she was glad he was getting the help he needs. It was the first time he had seen her face in nine months. “I’ll never forget that,” Michael said. “I still get emotional when I think about it. It gives me hope that maybe someday, I can do something that special for somebody.” “I pray a lot since coming here,” he continued. “I ask God to keep me safe, to keep my daughter safe. And these prayers are being answered by people stepping up to help me. God put me here to give me a second chance. I really believe that. I’m going to make Washington my home. I’m never going back to Carnegie. I’m not going back to my old way of life. I’ve come too far, and I’ve seen how good life can be.” Now, Michael has a job that he loves where he can give back. He gets to see his daughter, and he talks to her regularly. His life is turning around. His future is bright. You can help Michael and many more here at City Mission to continue their journeys of life-transformation. Visit to learn more about how you can help.

Looking Forward. Looking Back.

Sunrise at the Mission
March 15, 2024

It’s hard to believe we’re already two and a half months into 2024! After the whirlwind of our Sweet Sunday event and the transition of our President/CEO, we are finally able to catch a breath and reflect. And while we’re looking forward with anticipation to what 2024 will bring, we know that our future successes will be built on the foundation of last year's achievements. In 2023, we embraced resilience and growth, a testament to our commitment and the collective spirit that drives our mission. The year was marked by overcoming challenges, particularly in adapting to a post-pandemic landscape. Our dual focus on delivering comprehensive services to those in need while laying the groundwork for a new women's shelter highlighted our adaptability and determination. We extend our deepest gratitude to the generous donors and our dedicated staff, whose tireless efforts have been pivotal in reaching our goals. Their contributions have enabled us to meet immediate needs and make strides towards long-term solutions. As we reflect on the accomplishments and challenges of 2023, we are filled with optimism for what 2024 can become. Together, we look to the future, ready to face new challenges and seize the opportunities that await. Operational Highlights and Challenges In 2023, City Mission navigated the complex terrain of providing for four distinct homeless populations while forging ahead with plans for a new shelter dedicated to homeless women. This balancing act of addressing immediate needs while planning for the future was no small feat! The result of that effort was not just a continuation of our mission but an enhancement, underscored by impressive HEIRS outcome statistics, with a 69% overall success rate for residents who stay at least 90 days in our program. These achievements highlight our commitment to not just meet but exceed the needs of those we serve. Fundraising Successes The past year also saw us achieving significant milestones in fundraising, particularly for our new women's facility. A significant amount of the funds required to build the new facility have been secured, thanks to the unwavering support of our community. However, we still have a lot more to raise, so please continue to help us bring even more hope to homeless women. The financial backing we received this past year is a testament to the faith our donors place in us and the hard work of our staff and our residents who meet new challenges every day as they fight to restore their lives to purpose and indepedence. We are deeply grateful for this support, which not only sustains our day-to-day operations but also propels us towards our future goals. But we still have a lot more work to do and more funds to raise every single day to continue our mission. Recognition of Service 2023 was a year marked by poignant moments of recognition and remembrance. One such moment was when the Washington County Community Foundation honored Doug Bush, a long-standing member of our team, with the prestigious Louis Waller Humanitarian Award. This award celebrated Doug's lifetime commitment to addiction recovery work and his faithful service to the most vulnerable in Southwestern PA. His recognition came at a particularly challenging time, as Doug was battling cancer. Yet, it was a beautiful testament to his impact, showing the deep respect and admiration our community holds for those who dedicate their lives to serving others. Sadly, we lost Doug in October. His passing was a profound loss, felt deeply by all who were fortunate enough to know him. We remember Doug not just for his contributions to City Mission but for the spirit of hope and love he embodied! Support and Successes Despite the challenges faced, City Mission's commitment to providing a pathway to independence for our residents remained resolute. In 2023, we were able to offer an impressive array of services, including 131,252 meals, 46,455 bed nights, 484 ID cards, 210 educational and career assessments, 189 financial training classes, and 14,997 medical clinical services. These figures represent more than just numbers; they reflect the lives touched and the hope restored through our work. Our efforts extended beyond basic needs, encompassing comprehensive support designed to propel our residents towards self-sufficiency and a brighter future. The success of these programs is a tribute to the dedication of our staff and the generosity of our supporters, illustrating the tangible difference we can make when we come together for a common purpose. Looking Toward the Future As we celebrate the milestones achieved in 2023 and navigate the challenges, our journey into 2024 is filled with hope and determination. The establishment of the new women's shelter, which is scheduled to break ground in May, is a beacon of our ongoing commitment to extend our reach and deepen our impact. This project, pivotal to our mission, represents just one of the many ways we strive to serve those in need with dignity and compassion. How You Can Help: • Donations: Every contribution, large or small, fuels our ability to provide essential services. We invite you to join us in making a difference by donating through our website or participating in our fundraising campaigns. Your generosity can transform lives and empower individuals to achieve independence. • Volunteer Opportunities: Our volunteers are the heartbeat of our mission. Whether you're looking to serve meals, assist in our events, or lend your expertise to professional services, your time and talents can have a profound impact. • Event Participation: Events like Sweet Sunday not only raise crucial funds but also bring our community together in celebration of what we can achieve collectively. Please mark your calendars and stay tuned for our upcoming events in 2024. As we look to the future, we are reminded of the power of collective action and the difference we can make when we all work together. For more information on how you can make a difference, visit our ways to help page or call us at 724-222-8530. If you need our services, please reach out to our support team.

Passing the Torch

City Mission President/CEO, Diana Irey Vaughan
March 8, 2024

On Monday, March 4, in City Mission’s Porter Pillow and Peggie Beaver Pillow Chapel, Dean Gartland hosted his final weekly chapel service as President/CEO, and he introduced former Washington County Commissioner, Diana Irey Vaughan, as his successor. “We have a tremendous new journey in front of us,” Gartland said. “I’m excited for City Mission and what’s going to happen here in the future. This Mission belongs to Christ, and He cares about everyone in this place.” When Gartland introduced Irey Vaughan as the new President/CEO, he explained that, “God has prepared her to step into this role and to continue persevering through the trials that will come at City Mission.” Next, new President/CEO Diana Irey Vaughan took the podium and introduced herself to the audience of staff members and residents. She spoke briefly about her upbringing in West Virginia and her 28-year career as a Washington County Commissioner. “I became very involved with City Mission during my time as a Commissioner,” she explained. “God always put it on my heart to serve others, and when I saw the impact that the Mission was having in people’s lives, I really grew to love it. I’m so excited to be a part of the family here at City Mission.” She went on to say that Gartland has left very large shoes to fill in the position. “It’s a little intimidating actually,” she said. “Dean has done a tremendous job!” After that, several City Mission residents spoke up. One resident said, “I want to thank City Mission for saving my life.” Another resident said, “God is moving here at City Mission, and He’s going to continue to move in this place.” We pray that City Mission continues to be a light in the darkness for another 83 years. Please support our ongoing mission to share Christ, to shelter, to heal, and to restore the homeless to independent living – without discrimination. Visit

The Sweetest Sunday

February 8, 2024

In 1994, a group of City Mission volunteers and board members had a sweet idea! Sweet Sunday co-founders, Cindy Pfrimmer and Phyllis Ross began meeting regularly to discuss fundraising ideas, and one day, over a cup of coffee, the idea for the Sweet Sunday Dessert Festival was born. The first Sweet Sunday was held at the Holiday Inn on Racetrack Road in Washington. There were dessert vendors, celebrity judges, kids’ activities, auction items, raffle baskets, and a line-up of live entertainers – the same event framework that we still use today. The premiere sponsor that year was Dr. Ron Salvitti, a local ophthalmologist and founder of the Southwestern PA Eye Care Center. Remarkably, Dr. Salvitti and his group at Southwest PA Eye Center have continued to sponsor Sweet Sunday every single year for the past 30 years. Bob Gregg from WJPA helped to promote that first Sweet Sunday, and to this day, he still helps promote Sweet Sunday. For the past 20 years, he has also broadcast live from the event, conducting interviews and making live announcements. Ross and Pfrimmer were expecting 500 guests at the very first Sweet Sunday, but an astounding 1500 showed up! The dessert festival has grown every year since then and has become City Mission’s largest fundraiser of the year and one of the premiere winter events in Washington County. This year, City Mission’s thirtieth anniversary presented by MPLX, is expecting over 3200 guests, 27 dessert vendors, and an amazing schedule of live entertainment, featuring Scott Blasey of The Clarks. As always, there will be raffle baskets, auction items, the café, Kids Korner complete with your favorite characters from Royal Princess Engagements, and all the sweets you can possibly imagine! This year’s event will take place on Sunday, February 25 from 12-5pm at the Hilton Garden Inn at Southpointe. All proceeds support City Mission’s life-transforming programs and services for the homeless. Sweet Sunday is the sweetest way you can help those in need in your community. You donut want to miss it! Learn more by visiting

Running For the Mission

Diana Irey Vaughan at Disney Land in Anaheim, CA
February 2, 2024

Former Washington County Commissioner and soon-to-be President/CEO of City Mission, Diana Irey Vaughan, recently ran seven races over seven days on two separate coasts for a total of 71 miles, all to raise funds in support of City Mission’s Hope for Homeless Women capital campaign. “I support Washington City Mission because I want everyone to have an opportunity to fulfill God’s calling in their life,” she explained. “Those served at the Mission, and their families, will find the support and resources they need to achieve success. I know of no other resource in our community that achieves the success rate of City Mission.” This was the sixth running event she has organized to support the Mission, and over the years, she has been able to raise $138,000. “Diana is tireless,” said City Mission Chief Development Officer, Dr. Sally Mounts. “Each year, she sets higher goals for her runs, and best of all, this year, she ran for City Mission’s new shelter for homeless women. How can you beat that?” Starting on March 1, Irey Vaughan will assume the President/CEO role for City Mission, and Dean Gartland, City Mission’s current President/CEO, will transition into a role as President Emeritus, where he will continue to raise funds for the new 50-bed shelter for homeless women, which will break ground this year. “Diana is a long-time major donor to City Mission, and an indisputable believer in the notion that God gives second chances,” Gartland, who has served the Mission for 15 years, said of his successor. “She has my fullest confidence, as a Christian and as a leader.” Washington City Mission provides food, shelter, and medical services for those in need. “The Mission provides the opportunity for a new life for the residents they serve,” said Irey Vaughan. “Families I know personally have been reunited and restored. City Mission is a beacon of hope.”

Those who hope in the Lord will renew their strength. They will soar on wings like eagles; they will run and not grow weary, they will walk and not be faint.     — Isaiah 40:31