"I'm what the world considers to be a phenomenally successful man. And I've failed much more than I've succeeded.
And each time I fail, I get my people together, and I say, "Where are we going?" And it starts to get better." - Calvin Trager

With Ya, my Ga tutor in Mallam
The Rev. Mike Kinman
Executive Director
Episcopalians for Global Reconciliation
Age: 38

Check out Forsyth School ...
where Robin teaches and
the boys attend.

Since you're already blowing time surfing,
why not do some cool stuff

  • Watch the Make Poverty History videos
  • Watch Sara McLachlan's "World on Fire" video
  • Take a seat at Oxfam America's Hunger Banquet
  • Look at the "Eight Ways to Change The World" photo exhibition
  • See how rich you are on the Global Rich List
  • Make a promise to do something cool -- and get people to do it with you
  • Use your computer to fight HIV/AIDS and other diseases

    While you're at it, do these things
  • Join the ONE Campaign to Make Poverty History
  • Join the Episcopal Public Policy Network
  • Join Amnesty International
  • Subscribe to Sojourners Online newsletter about faith, politics and culture
  • Sign the Micah Call and join other Christians in the fight against poverty
  • Subscribe to a great new magazine about women and children transforming our world

    People who show us What One Person Can Do
  • Liza Koerner (Teaching soccer and doing mission work in Costa Rica)
  • Erica Trapps (Raising money so Tanzanian children can go to school -- check out her photo gallery)

    What's happening in Sudan might
    surprise (and shock) you

  • Episcopal Diocese of Lui
  • South Sudanese Friends International
  • The Sudan Tribune
  • SudanReeves -- research, analysis and advocacy
  • Save Darfur
  • Darfur: a genocide we can stop

    For your daily fix on the irreverent...
  • Jesus of the Week
  • The Onion

    Interesting People Who Are Great To Read
  • Beth Maynard's excellent U2 sermons blog
  • Global Voices Online
  • Neha Viswanathan - poetry, commentary, humor, reflections

    Some interesting organizations and programs
  • Borgen Project - poverty reduction through political accountability
  • CARE
  • Center of Concern
  • DATA: Debt, AIDS and Trade in Africa (Bono's site)
  • El Circulo de Mujeres/Circle of Women
  • Engineering Ministries International
  • Episcopal Peace Fellowship
  • Episcopal Relief and Development
  • FreshMinistries
  • Global Campaign Against Poverty
  • Global Ministries
  • Global Work Ethic Fund -- Promoting philanthropy and fundraising in developing and transition countries.
  • Karen Emergency Relief Fund
  • Magdalene House
  • The M.K. Gandhi Institute for Nonviolence
  • Natural Capitalism
  • NetMarkAid - Humanitarian Entrepreneurs
  • North American Association for the Diaconate
  • Peace Child International
  • People Building Peace
  • Project Honduras
  • Results - Creating political will to end hunger
  • St. Paul's Institute
  • Stop Global AIDS
  • TakingITGlobal -- connecting youth for action in local and global communities
  • Tanzania Educational AIDS Mission
  • TEAR (Transformation, Empowerment, Advocacy, Relief) - An Australian Christian anti-poverty movement
  • Working For Change
  • Xigi.net -- an open-source tool to aid discovery in the capital markets that fund good.

    Some Episcopal churches and dioceses doing cool things
  • Companions of Swaziland - Diocese of Iowa's Companion Relationship
  • International Development Missions -- St. Paul's Church, Sparks, NV
  • The Malaria Villages Project - St. Paul's Church, West Whiteland, PA

    Must-read books and websites about them
  • What Can One Person Do: faith to heal a broken world -- Sabina Alkire & Edmund Newell
  • The End of Poverty -- Jeffrey Sachs

    Learn more about things you really should know more about
  • UN Millenium Development Goals
  • The Millennium Campaign
  • AIDS Matters - a resource for global AIDS professionals
  • Christian Aid's in-depth report: "Millennium Lottery: Who lives and who dies in an age of third world debt?"
  • Foreign Policy In Focus
  • Poverty Mapping
  • Solutions for a water-short world
  • Transparency International: The global coalition against corruption
  • UNICEF's State of The World's Children report 2005

    General cool and/or goofy stuff
  • Alicebot chat robot
  • Bono Quotes -- but what's really wild is that it's from a page on Boycottliberalism.com!
  • Buffy Slanguage
  • Big Bunny

    Useful web tools
  • Gcast - make your own podcast
  • Podzinger - podcast search engine
  • Orb - streaming digital media

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    Listed on Blogwise
  • Monday, June 07, 2004
    I'm sitting at Busy Internet ... a (go figure) busy internet cafe in Accra. The good news is that it has hi-speed access. The one in Malam, where I am living, is REALLY slow. One of the students here said she was there for an hour and a half yesterday just checking her email.

    I don't think I'll be able to post as often as I wanted to ... mostly because doing just about everything here takes a lot more effort than I am used to.

    I arrived in Accra last night, got through immigration and customs very easilly, walked under a giant Coca-Cola sign (you can't get away from it) and out to the airport. The people James sent to get me were about a half an hour late picking me up, so a man named Peter "befriended" me, appointed himself my bodyguard while I waited and kept trying to get me to take a taxi from his friend (despite my insistences both that James was coming and that I would have no idea where to tell a taxi to take me!).

    When I got back to James' place -- a 30-40 minute drive through this amazingly lively community ... everyone is out in the streets (and I mean IN the streets) at night -- he, his wife, his sons, and Immanuel, the priest at his church, welcomed me in the traditional Ghanian way -- by giving me life, symbolized by a glass of water (fortunately, it wasn't tap water, so I could drink it!).

    I am staying in a room in this compound owned by James' family. There are three students here -- two MSW students from South Carolina and one from St. Louis University -- with many more coming (including Mackinnon on Tuesday!). There is no hot water, which is just fine because very few things have ever felt better than the cold shower I took last night before bed!

    The people here are amazingly friendly. James walked me around the neighborhood today (which would not fit any description of a neighborhood that most Americans would recognize ... James' house is in a walled compound and -- though there is no phone or hot water, it has electricity and running water and good living space ... much of the surrounding houses are much more hovelish, lots of roofs made of scrap metal, etc.) and everyone greeted me warmly. I can't remember the last time I had so many strangers give me wonderful warm smiles.

    This morning, we had a meeting with some social work students from the University of Ghana who will be doing practicums with CENCOSAD ... it served as my orientation, too. The meeting was supposed to start at 8 am and it began at 9:30 -- my first introduction to what Lisa (one of the USC MSW students) calls GMT ... Ghana Maybe Time. Everything here is late. Nothing starts on time. You pretty much just have to go with it.

    What else can I share with you. They sell EVERYTHING in the streets here. And I mean EVERYTHING! When you stop your car, they will come up to you with big boxes of toilet paper or corn or FanYogurt (a fabulous frozen yogurt - yum!) or just about everything. Crossing the street you take your life in your hands. I feel like I do when I'm riding in the truck (I am the only one who wears a seatbelt, so I guess I'm some Ghanadriving nerd!), but I haven't seen any accidents . I think it's like BOston or what I hear about Rome and that is when everyone drives like they're insane, chaos theory kicks in and everyone ends up OK!

    Overall, I'm feeling VERY overwhelmed. This is my first experience in the third world and it is like another planet to what I am used to. Just sitting here at a computer writing on the internet is familiar enough that it's a real stress reliever. There is just so much that is new ... not just what I am seeing but the smells and sounds (I fell asleep to frogs croaking and woke up to roosters crowing ... and I'm in the city!) and what to eat and drink (and what not to). Add to that my jet lag and really missing Robin and the kids and having half my heart in Columbia at Jim's funeral today and it's been a day of difficult adjustment. That will get better.

    It's also been a great day. I've made great new friends. Met wonderful people. I've been treated with gracious hospitality. We visited St. Luke's church and the rector -- a man in his 70s who looks like he's in his 40s -- took us all into the church and led us in prayers of thanksgiving for my safe arrival.

    Wednesday, James is taking me for a meeting with the bishop, whom he said is sure to quiz "the priest from the gay church." Huzzah! (or so Rory, Ryan and Beth would say). I'll be sure and let you know how that goes :^).

    Well, my internet time is almost up. I love you all. Keep me in your prayers as you are in mine. Prayers are sustaining.

    Mike at 6/07/2004 11:39:00 AM

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    Episcopalians for
    Global Reconciliation

    EGR is an organization resourcing a grassroots movement of spiritual transformation in the Episcopal Church to end extreme poverty on this planet.

    The structure for this movement is the Millennium Development Goals -- 8 goals committed to by all member nations of the UN and a unique partnership of governments and civil society to:

    *End extreme poverty
    *Achieve universal
    primary education

    *Promote gender equalty
    *Improve maternal health
    *Reverse the spread of HIV/AIDS
    *Promote environmental sustainability
    *Build a global partnership for development

    EGR resources and connects the church to embrace what one person, one congregation, one diocese and one church can do to make this mission of global reconciliation happen.

    Want to find out more ... check our our website at www.e4gr.org.

    "Christ's example is being demeaned by the church if they ignore the new leprosy, which is AIDS. The church is the sleeping giant here. If it wakes up to what's really going on in the rest of the world, it has a real role to play. If it doesn't, it will be irrelevant."
    - Bono


    What I'm Reading
    Team of Rivals: The Political Genius of Abraham Lincoln
    by Doris Kearns Goodwin