"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, November 28, 2006

    Suffering, humility and servanthood

    The finest preacher I know (and I've heard a LOT of sermons) is Becca Stevens. She's also one of the finest priests and just finest people I know. She preaches and lives the Gospel with such light.

    Every fall break, ECM goes down to be with the women of Magdalene House -- the amazing community of women breaking the cycle of abuse that comes with the life of street prostitution in Nashville, TN.

    I checked out the sermon from the Oct. 22 -- the Sunday the ECM students were there last month -- and it is one of her very best. It's called "suffering, humility and servanthood" and it is as good a sermon as I have ever heard about the Christian life.

    You can hear it yourself by going here - it's the audio of the whole service, so if you're in a hurry, you'll have to fast forward to the sermon. But if you've got time, listen from the beginning because the spirit of the congregation shows through in the liturgy and music.

    She closes her sermon with these words -- so if you don't have time to listen, you can just sit with these:

    "God forgive us when we're ever not humbled that people ever let us serve them. And God forgive us when our theology becomes a position to defend and not a story of serving others in our lives. May our theology be our story unfolding in service. And may God continue to get us to come round right to be compassionate to others in their suffering, to be humble in our own lives and to desire to serve our God."
    Mike at 11/28/2006 11:30:00 AM

    Friday, November 24, 2006

    Schroedter has a blog!

    When Schroedter was born, my brother bought the domain www.schroedter.com for him (having a unique name like Schroedter comes in handy when you're doing things like getting a website). Unfortunately because his dad only has cursory knowledge of things like building a website, and trying to guide a 6-7 year old through designing something with DreamWeaver should be against the Geneva Convention, we never put much up on the site.

    Then my mom had the brilliant idea last night of setting up a blog for him. It's much easier to set up, still a lot of room for flexibility of design and anytime he wants to put something new on it won't be a a new adventure in torture-by-html.

    So here it is -- schroedter.blogspot.com. Once I get my act together, I'll work through my brother and brother-in-law (who hosts schroedter.com through the most excellent Carpathia hosting (where he is COO) to transfer hosting of the site to schroedter.com so he can make use of that great URL.

    So, the coolest thing you could do right now is go to it and leave a comment on his first post so he'll get even more excited about it. One can only hope he's more faithful updating it than his dad!
    Mike at 11/24/2006 12:25:00 PM

    Wedding Photos!
    I've been long delinquent in posting photos from the two 2006 ECM weddings I officiated -- Michelle & Adam's (June in Detroit)and Ryan & Amanda's (October in Natchez, MS).

    Instead of putting them all on the blog, I've posted them to my Flickr account so you can look at them all there.

    But here's one from each just to get you started. The first is Michelle Davis and her maid of honor, Stephanie Rhodes (also an ECM alum and two-year roommate of Michelle). This was taken just a few minutes before the ceremony. The wedding was at a beautiful country club on an island near Detroit. It was an outdoor wedding that combined elements of Adam's Jewish tradition and Michelle's Episcopal tradition (the second time I've done a Jewish-Christian wedding ... though the first I was on firmer footing as I had a rabbi with me!).

    Ryan and Amanda were also at the wedding. And speaking of Ryan and Amanda, here they are! Their wedding was at Trinity Episcopal Church in Natchez, MS. It was a gorgeous day -- about 75 degrees and not a cloud in the sky. Couldn't have been more perfect! The wedding was late afternoon, but they took pictures before -- including ones like this one taken just a block or so away from the church. Oh, and Michelle and Adam came out from San Francisco for this one, too.
    Mike at 11/24/2006 12:07:00 PM

    Monday, November 20, 2006
    GREAT U2Charist Ad!

    Here's a great ad for a U2charist service at St. Matthew's in the city in Auckland, NZ. You can find other videos and a cool billboard here.
    Mike at 11/20/2006 11:30:00 AM

    Thursday, November 02, 2006

    All Souls Day

    A friend of mine on my Gen X clergy listserv sent us this website -- the Boomer DeathCounter -- which is great in its own way. But mostly, I'm writing about it because it made me think of another one -- The Death Clock -- which, after entering some very basic information, gives you your own personal day of death (mine is Thursday, Oct. 27, 2067) and then has a ticking counter of how many seconds you have to live.

    I preached on this once -- perhaps it was the passage about "all the hairs on your head being numbered" or something like that. But I think it's a powerful spiritual reminder in this culture that is so much into denying death that even though the DeathClock probably isn't getting it exactly right, every one of us has a personal day of death, and every one of us has that ticking clock.

    My mentor, the Rev. Jim Fallis, who died a couple summers back, talked with me once about "living as if you believe." I think about that all the time. There are all sorts of things I believe with varying degrees of doubt and certitude ... but the key question is "Do I live AS IF I believe them?" Do I live as if I believe my life is a precious gift and is at once the scarce resource of the ticking clock and the eternal abundance of eternal life in Christ? Do I live as if I am aware of that clock and yet not afraid of it? Do I live as if I trust God to take care of all who and that really matters to me and not feel like the weight of the world is on my shoulders and that everything would fall apart if I were not there? What if I get hit by a bus on the way to the Thai Cafe in 20 minutes? What if my death clock is ticking down to zero right now? (By the way, if that happens, someone please direct to this site whomever preaches my funeral homily -- it will at least be kind of cool and exceptionally spooky to be that prescient!) Do I live as if I believe God will take care of everything just fine without me?

    I remember the morning after Jim died. I was driving around and started thinking that, for all appearances, it was a day like any other day. Only it wasn't. For the first time in 75-odd years -- and for the first day in my life, Jim Fallis wasn't drawing breath on this earth. The world seemed a little poorer. Mostly, it just seemed weird. Even more, I just felt small. Like there was a whole universe out there that I didn't have a clue about. That the comings and goings of life were a small part of that and I was only a small part of that small part. But that somehow, God was there and it didn't really matter if I had a clue about it -- only that I lived as if I believed God was there.

    I think that's why I love All Souls day. Even more than Ash Wednesday every year, All Souls reminds me that in the end we're all worm food -- that the Death Clock ticks for us all. That's weird -- and it's a weird that I just need to sit with. As much as I love my life. And even more, as much as I love the lives of my wife, my kids, my family, the ECM students I've had the past 10 years, my friends -- they're all this weird combination of incredibly precious and incredibly fragile ... embodiments all at once of the scarcity of life and the abundance of eternity.

    Jim Fallis and Julia McNeely. Grace Bush and my maternal grandmother. Scott Barker's brother and the four-month old child Dahn Gandell buried last month. The nameless (to us) legions killed in Iraq and Darfur this day. The child who died of malaria while I type this sentence. All Souls. All precious. All somehow connected in ways I can't even begin to fathom.

    And someday I will join them. And when I do, I believe I'll find they were never really that far away -- and that my journey to meet them is a journey from scarcity into a greater abundance than this feeble mind can imagine.

    In the meantime, it's up to me to live as if I believe that.
    Mike at 11/02/2006 12:07:00 PM

    Wednesday, November 01, 2006

    A Muslim Voice: The Disgrace of Darfur

    Aijaz Zaka Syed of the Khaleej Times writes this about Darfur from a perspective we usually don't hear in this country:
    THIS is an issue that has been staring us in the face for the past three years now. Over 300,000 people dead; three million driven from their homes and a country at war with itself. Darfur remains a huge challenge for the conscience of the Arab and Muslim world and an ever growing black spot on its visage.

    Why are the world’s 1.6 billion Muslims, otherwise swift to protest any slight or perceived injustice in any part of the globe, then silent on the shame of this great humanitarian tragedy unfolding in Sudan’s Darfur?

    For one, most Arabs and Muslims, an overwhelming majority of them, do not really know what is going on in Darfur. For two, they suspect that the hue and cry of the West over Darfur and its indignant condemnation of Sudan are politically motivated, as always. Most Arabs and Muslims believe that the West has an axe to grind in seeking action against Sudan on the question of Darfur. Given the current tendency in the West to target everything Islamic, this suspicion is not really without basis.

    Indeed, the Islamic world has every reason to be distrustful of Western motives in seeking action against Africa’s largest, Muslim-majority and Arabic speaking country. After all, the Middle East and Africa share a long history of manipulation and exploitation by the colonial West over the past couple of centuries.

    The West may indeed have an agenda in pushing for an international peacekeeping force in Darfur. Many in Sudan suspect, and not without reason, that the Western concern for the people of Darfur is motivated by a greed for the country’s rich natural resources. Sudan is home to huge and largely untapped energy resources.

    But even if the West’s interest in Darfur is driven by its political and economic interests, should the Muslim world ignore the larger issue at stake? That is, the endless and systematic ethnic cleansing of the people of Darfur?
    Read the whole article here.
    Mike at 11/01/2006 05:23:00 PM

    Nightmare on Pershing Ave.

    Halloween has come and gone and fun was had by all -- especially by the boys who went as Yoda and Darth Schroedter. Observe!

    Mike at 11/01/2006 03:34:00 PM

    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