A Complicated Problem

By Bill Andersen, Jr. EYC Mentor

Last evening, Jr. EYC engaged in another one of our  “Things we don’t talk about at church, but probably should” sessions.

The topic was homelessness. And more specifically, the following question:  “How should we – as followers of Christ – interact with the people we see begging for money on 15/501 and near exit ramps?”

Everyone shared an observation.. some were emphatic in their views …. others were more reserved… but all had empathy.. and all realized this was a complicated problem.

Then we tried to “physically categorize” ourselves by moving to one of 4 couches, each signifying a position,  from “never” to “no, but because..” to “yes, but because” to “always” (interact/give money).

Some knew right off where they fell .. many switched as the discussion went on.. some couldn’t bring themselves to align with a single position and so straddled in between couches..

Mentors were careful to avoid injecting their opinions .. but prodded with questions that began with “why..”

We ended with more questions and opinions than we could get to…. but it was clear – our youth are definitely paying attention when we
drive up to those intersections and exit ramps…

[This discussion will continue next week with a stirring documentary about how some Episcopalians in Durham are engaging the homeless… Here’s a short preview. -PMC]

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