Running into the fire

While skimming articles, pictures, and videos of the horrific Boston Marathon bombing, I keep noticing how some people were s130415_03-4_3_r536_c534running towards the bomb blasts to help while everyone else was running away.  I wonder- what makes some people run in when everyone else is fleeing?  Many people stood out as heroes- the Boston police, first responders, even a former Patriot’s football player- but one especially caught my attention.  You may have seen the pics of the big guy in the cowboy hat named Carlos Arredando. Continue reading

Social Justice Pharisee

I cannot easily dismiss the fact that at times I am a social justice Pharisee.
I have provided food to the hungry.
I have opened my home to the homeless.
I have given coats to those without adequate clothing.
I have befriended those frequently forgotten from foreign lands.

I have found myself not so different from those whom Jesus rebuked Continue reading

Burlington church opens doors to homeless

Several nights this winter, Burlington temps have fallen below zero.  For many in Burlington this extreme cold creates an inconvenience, but for the growing homeless population it’s a matter of life and death.  The shelters are out of space.  Community organizations went to every Burlington church and religious institution asking if they’d open their space as an overflow shelter.  Only one said yes- ONLY ONE. Continue reading


It all began during some downtime while loading furniture with the refugee move-in crew at the Vermont Refugee Resettlement Program’s warehouse.  A young Nepali guy had seen me pull up in my car and overheard that we’re heading to Burlington’s Old North End neighborhood which was also his neighborhood.  Continue reading

Jesus’ Mission= Our Mission?

Yesterday I had the opportunity to speak at North Ave. Alliance Church in Burlington.  I enjoyed speaking there so much, but the one part I don’t always enjoy is the accountability that comes with teaching.  James writes, Not many of you should become teachers, my brothers, for you know that we who teach will be judged with greater strictness (James 3:1).

So, here’s the big question I’m contemplating this morning for you, me, and anyone else reading this blog:

How does our functional mission as individuals and churches line up with the mission of Jesus?  Continue reading

World Refugee Day- being the church to our neighbors

This past Sunday our Burlington City Church Home Fellowships partnered with the Vermont Refugee Resettlement Program for World Refugee Day.  Most Sundays we meet in homes for a focused time of worshiping together which usually includes singing, sharing stories of God’s activity, praying for each other, teaching from the scriptures, and often taking communion.  It’s still very easy to get in the mode of “going to church” Continue reading