St. John’s Kitchen is a soup kitchen in Kitchener, Ontario, Canada. I spent some time with this community pre-COVID. One person in particular was gracious enough to spend a great deal of time with me to share how this special, unique space offers community and belonging to some of the most marginalized in our city. 

Here is the extended clip of the interview used on the I’m Who I Am album:

What is interesting about this song is that I incorporated elements of a song I wrote when I was 16 years old. I could hear the song from my past haunting me throughout the songwriting process. I kept hearing this interview quote in my head about being “lost”. Once I finally allowed myself to consider how the song I was writing and the chorus from my youth could be brought together, the song came flowing. A true testament to how common human emotion can bridge understandings of one another despite our different journeys.



I am lost, I am in distress
In deep turmoil, I began to dread
Losing hope, straying from the way
O Lord, it has been a very long day

We all are share the same needs and desires
Love, belonging, and a passionate fire
Food, and clothing, and a place to rest
We’re all looking for the same house


Sitting together in the Kitchen
Feeling so sad ‘cause someone’s missin’
When one of us hurts, we’re all in pain
We’re all crying in the same house


Love and acceptance are reigning down from the pulpit
Showering strangers, outsiders, and misfits
Some are welcome in the same house
Why aren’t some welcome in the same house?


Lyrics and Music By: Mary Neil and Len McCarthy
Performers: Mary Neil (vocals), Len McCarthy (acoustic guitar/keyboard), Glenn Marais (electric guitar/dobro), Manny DeGrandis (bass), Jeff Cowell (electric guitar/bass/percussion)
Co-Produced By: Mary Neil, Len McCarthy, Jeff Cowell

*Photo credit: Matt Collamer from

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