"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

    July 2003August 2003November 2003January 2004February 2004March 2004April 2004May 2004June 2004July 2004August 2004September 2004October 2004November 2004December 2004January 2005February 2005March 2005April 2005May 2005June 2005July 2005August 2005September 2005October 2005November 2005January 2006February 2006March 2006April 2006June 2006July 2006August 2006September 2006October 2006November 2006December 2006January 2007February 2007March 2007April 2007May 2007September 2007October 2007December 2007February 2008July 2008December 2008April 2009

    Listed on Blogwise
  • Tuesday, December 07, 2004

    Last week, I was with the boys at one of the newer mega-malls in St. Louis. It was morning and the usual pre-Christmas bustle was starting to heat up. There was a Santa Claus sitting amidst a mountain of Coca-Cola crates. There were tons of stores selling, well, I'd say more stuff than you can possibly imagine, except we've all been there. And most of it is just pretty much useless crap.

    One feature of this mall is giant video screens suspended over the walkways that play music videos. And this particular morning as people were beginning to run around in their pre-Christmas consumer hysteria, the screens were playing a video from the early 80s ... a little number from the Band Aid group that put on Live Aid called "Do they know it's Christmas?"

    Most of you probably know the song. It was written about people starving in Ethiopia in the 80s ... and since then with the advent of the AIDS pandemic things have gotten worse, not better. It goes like this:

    It's Christmastime
    There's no need to be afraid
    At Christmastime, we let in light and we banish shade
    And in our world of plenty we can spread a smile of joy
    Throw your arms around the world at Christmastime

    But say a prayer

    Pray for the other ones
    At Christmastime it's hard, but when you're having fun
    There's a world outside your window
    And it's a world of dread and fear
    Where the only water flowing is the bitter sting of tears
    And the Christmas bells that ring there are the clanging
    chimes of doom
    Well tonight thank God it's them instead of you

    And there won't be snow in Africa this Christmastime
    The greatest gift they'll get this year is life
    (Oooh) Where nothing ever grows
    No rain nor rivers flow
    Do they know it's Christmastime at all?

    (Here's to you) raise a glass for everyone
    (Here's to them) underneath that burning sun
    Do they know it's Christmastime at all?

    Feed the world
    Let them know it's Christmastime again

    I really like the song, but this Christmas it has more meaning for me because there are real names, faces and relationships attached to it. But that's not what hit me about it this time. It was the juxtaposition of this song playing on the big video screens and all these people running around in a buying frenzy.

    For probably a minute, I was literally paralyzed. I just couldn't deal with the disconnect. Wasn't anyone listening to this song? And, of course, I was there at that mall, too ... plopping down $50 on a deposit for Schroedter's birthday party at the glow-in-the-dark golf place.

    But then I was hit by the even deeper irony. Deeper than this song and mad shopping resting side by side. The irony is that that people I met in Africa DO know it's Christmas. They know it better than we do. They aren't caught up in the frenzy of consumerism ... they're celebrating the incarnation of Christ.

    Do they know it's Christmastime at all? You bet. The question is ... do we?

    You might have noticed something new on the left side of the blog. It's an appeal to give to the people of All Souls Liberian Episcopal Church and Child Development Center in Buduburam, Ghana. This is a community of Episcopal Liberian refugees who do more good with practically no resources than I have ever seen. They know it's Christmas. They put their whole trust in God's grace and love, but they also need us to be part of God honoring that trust.

    I'm asking you to take a minute and click on the Network for Good link on the left or right below. Click on it and make a donation to this amazing group of people living far from home with almost nothing to their names except an undying hope and faith (the donation goes to the Diocese of Missouri ... make sure you put "Liberian Refugees" in the memo line). Click and make a donation not so they can know it's Christmas ... but so you can.

    Blessings to you all this holy season of Advent and always.

    Mike at 12/07/2004 11:06:00 PM

    Comments: Post a Comment
    Subscribe in a reader
    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