"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
  • Tuesday, October 18, 2005
    Amber and Colin's Wedding!

    It's a week and a half late, but here are my pictures from Amber and Colin's wedding at St. Gregory of Nyssa in San Francisco.

    For the uninitatied, Amber Stancliffe was one of our first ECM students. She just finished her Master's of Divinity at CDSP and (hopefully) will be ordained a deacon soon. Colin is a fantastic guy who works in the tech sector in SF ... and he's also the brother of ECM alum Noah Evans -- who is now an Episcopal priest and who assisted at the service.

    Other than my own, it was easilly the most fun I've ever had at a wedding. And bar none it was the best, most carefully crafted wedding liturgy I've ever been a part of. A wonderful celebration. It was perfect.

    Also part of the crew, along with Amber and Noah, were two ECM alum bridesmaids -- Sarah Stanage and Christine Stanley ... and also Emily Mellott, one of Amber's CDSP classmates who is now working in St. Louis at St. Peter's Church in Ladue.

    So here are the pics:

    This is from the rehearsal. Obviously, that's Amber and Colin up front, but you can also see Sarah (in green) and Christine (two behind Sarah). The setup of St. Gregorys is that the liturgy of the Word takes place in this space and then the congregation does a simple communal dance step to get into the next room where Eucharist is. The congregation is seated arouund the area between the presider's chair and the platform from where scripture is read.

    That's Noah in the blue shirt saying something typically wry and his wife, Sara Irwin (also an Episcopal priest ... the place was lousy with clergy) looking on. Sara and Noah met when both were doing the Micah Project internship in Boston after graduation. They were ordained priest at the same service this past January and when it came time for them to be vested, they vested each other. It was wonderful.

    The rehearsal dinner was at this great Mexican cafeteria in the mission district -- with tons of people (looked like most of them were Amber's HUGE extended family). It's also a Stancliffe family tradition to cart these life-sized stuffed bride and groom figures to every family wedding. Amber said this photo should be their Christmas card this year. The dinner was great. I got to sit next to Sarah and catch up with her life and also have some great conversations with Donald Schell, rector of St. Gregory's.

    The staff at the restaurant gave Amber this fashionable apron as a memento of the rehearsal dinner. Most of the younger crowd headed back to Colin and Amber's place to hang out after the dinner. Me not being part of that crowd but still wanting to hang out joined them! I can't tell you how great it was to be around these people that I had spent four years with while they were in college. It was like old times, but it was so much better because they have each even more become these amazing people that I am so honored and proud to know. Looking at this picture, I know I have a picture somewhere of Amber and Sarah standing in the same pose right before an ECM Christmas party they threw together at Amber's apartment. Should do a before and after.

    Here's the bride. I know it's cliche, but there's no other way to say it. Amber was positively glowing throughout the day. It wasn't just that she looked great ... she was just so happy -- as was Colin, as was simply everyone. It was such a relaxed and joyful affair, with everyone really there to celebrate. But it was more than just having fun. Amber and Colin have taken their preparation for marriage more seriously than any couple I've ever known ... and it really showed. I've never seen a couple more truly together in the wedding experience. It was wonderful.

    Here's the couple and the bridesmaids. On the left is Sarah Stanage, who was our first ECM intern and is now in her second year of med school at Louisville. Then there's Christine Stanley, who is doing amazing research at USF and is just wonderful and brilliant. On the other side of Amber and Colin is Emily Mellott, the transitional deacon who is here in St. Louis. Then on the end -- and I am SO embarrassed that I can't remember her name, ARRRRGHH -- is this amazing woman that Amber has known since middle school or before who works at NASA Mission Control in Houston and whose job is to help keep the international space station in the right orbit trajectory (Schroedter thought it was really cool that I met her).

    When you go to St. Gregory's, you enter the world of ancient worship, and the vestments are a big part of that. The vestry looks like a fabric store. I'm used to putting on a white alb and stole for a wedding. When I got there, Noah was already dressed to the nines in the blue and he said "they just told me to pick something out that I liked!" The only guideline was "be festive". Well, Robin always told me that one of the good things about being ordained was that it cut down on my fashion decisions ... so I had someone accessorize me. Going in, I wasn't going to wear the hat, but after you've got all the other stuff on, resistance becomes useless. My main fear was that Amber and Colin wouldn't be able to keep a straight face while I was preaching. Really, though it was just a wonderful part of the festivities.

    Here's the ECM alum group. Left to right, it's Christine, Sarah, me, Noah and Amber. We took this at the reception, which was just a great party. The DJ pretty much played nothing but mixes of 80s music. If you know me, you know I'm not much of a dancer, but I probably danced more at that reception than at any time in my life. It was too much fun. An ECM wedding tradition was officially established when a friend of Amber and Colin's blessed the keg using the "Beer Prayer" that we used to bless kegs for Sigma Nu at WILD at Wash. U. (at Noah and Sara's wedding, all the ECMers there gathered around to bless the keg). Noah and Christine and others gave wonderful toasts. It was just perfect.

    Finally, here they are with their last dance before they took off -- with all of us blowing bubbles on them.

    One of the best parts of my job is that I get to keep track of and stay in relationship with all these wonderful people as they go through life. There is nothing like the honor of being included in celebrations like this. Nothing like it at all.
    Mike at 10/18/2005 02:57:00 PM

    Monday, October 03, 2005
    Five Talents

    The one who had received five talents came forward bringing the additional five. He said, 'Master, you gave me five talents. See, I have made five more.'
    His master said to him, 'Well done, my good and faithful servant. Since you were faithful in small matters, I will give you great responsibilities. Come, share your master's joy.'

    Nothing amazes me more than the beauty of God working through people with pure hearts, creative minds and the courage to put both to action. And since I started working with Episcopalians for Global Reconciliation, it seems like I come across these people all the time.

    One of them I've had the privilege to work with more and more over the past couple years is Craig Cole, the executive director of Five Talents International.

    Five Talents International is an Anglican initiative which is committed to combating poverty in the developing world by:

    * Equipping the poor with small business training and small loan programs
    * Equipping the church with the tools to help the poor in small business
    * Showing Christ's love and mercy in thought, word and deed
    * Affirming human dignity

    In short, it is an amazingly effective way on a small scale to help people help themselves. One of the other amazing people who astound me, Becca Stevens of Magdalene House, calls what she does "changing the world one life at a time." That would apply to 5T's work as well.

    And what I also love is the name ... because Five Talents is really what it's all about. Like the Biblical story -- it's all about what you do with what you're given.

    But the really amazing thing you find when you start looking around is that there are countless people who are doing things like this. People whose hearts have been moved and minds have been engaged by God's call to help those in need -- and have found in so doing that they are getting the life they need as well.

    I got an email today from a professor at Westmont College in Santa Barbara, CA about one of her students (I'll publish the name once I have her permission). She wrote:

    "She's a senior this year at Westmont College, back on campus after spending a semester studying with the Houghton in Tanzania Program. She kept us updated on both the beauty and the grinding poverty she saw while she was in Tanzania, and came home committed to keeping up a dialogue between these two parts of her world.

    One thing that nagged at her is how bright children were passing the rigorous state exams for grade school, but their families couldn't afford the $40 in expenses to keep them in school for the next year. She knew that she was back on a campus of 1200 students, where everyone can afford a dollar for something. So, she's sitting in front of the dining commons this week, challenging students (and faculty and staff along with them) to give her one dollar.

    She has great faith, and she's convinced that by the end of the week, she'll have enough money to mail off to her contact in Tanzania so that he can help 30 children enroll in school for the year. I've seen her faith at work, and I won't be surprised if there's enough there for many more than 30 children when she is done."

    It's a perfect five talents story. A story of what you can do with what you've been given if you just let your heart and mind run free.

    And the most amazing thing is that the story is right. When we use what we have to create more for others, we share in God's joy. It's such a simple equation, it's a wonder everyone isn't doing it.

    But a lot of people are.
    Mike at 10/03/2005 03:56:00 PM

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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