serving those in need

Parallel Universes

I sat listening to two older couples talking at my favorite coffee shop.  I was working on a presentation for an Urban Ministry Strategy seminar I will be attending next week, and I have been immersed in the demographic and ethnographic realities of poor inner city life for a few […]

Mission Motivation, Mission Manipulation

I witnessed one of the best missions presentations today at the Wisconsin School of Christian Mission.  Anita Ayers Henderlight, Executive Director of the Africa Education & Leadership Initiative presented an uplifting, positive, informative, hopeful and highly motivational program on the Sudan.  Uplifting?  Positive?  Hopeful?  SUDAN?  What gives?  The United Methodist Church […]

When It Matters Most

Sometimes it takes a crisis.  Sometimes it takes a terrible tragedy to remind us what’s important.  In a week of unremitting sadness for the victims of the earthquake in Haiti, it has been oddly refreshing to turn to United Methodist information sources and not read about our institutional plight, but […]

Haiti

My heart is breaking.  I haven’t been back to Haiti in more than 20 years, but a big piece of my heart is there.  The trips I made to Haiti were life-shaping and values-reshaping.  I learned more about being a member of a global community working in Haiti than I […]

Sins of Nomission

A large number of United Methodist congregations are struggling — with money, with members, with commitment, with leadership, with a host of problems large and small.  Many of these churches aren’t doing anything wrong to cause these problems — in fact, they aren’t doing anything much at all.  And that’s […]

Goats of Christmas Yet To Come

Every once in a while, I blog about something I consider a “no-brainer,” something so obvious (at least to me…) that I cannot fathom anyone disagreeing.  But I am always wrong — there’s no such thing as a sure thing.  Case in point: caring for the poor.  The idea that […]

With Fulfillment

Kudos to Circuit Rider for the Nov./Dec./Jan. issue focusing on ministry with the poor.  So many other voices share my conviction that ministry “with” is our future, rather than ministry “to” or “for” the poor (so I must be right).  Of the Four Areas of Focus of The United Methodist […]