Catching Up with Encouraging Developments
Nov 18, 2011 by M. Daniel Carroll R. | 0 Comments
It has been a while since I posted. Mea culpa, mea culpa! This lag time has been due in part to a busy schedule. I have wanted get through a few events this month that I have participated in order to share them with a wider audience. I am on a plane flying back from Chicago (today is November 17th), and thought this would be a good time to stop and share this update.
Here are the things that I have had the privilege and joy of being a part of:
- November 5: During the morning and early afternoon I attended the Denver Justice Conference, where I was part of an hour-long panel on immigration. This conference was a gathering of primarily younger Christians and a number of ministries and groups involved in different local justice issues. Two things were particularly encouraging: One, to see this younger generation embracing the issue of immigration. Two, to see how this was connected to other justice issues. It is important to see that the heart of God extends to all matters of the vulnerable in our midst: the poor, the homeless, minority children, immigrants, and the like.
- November 5: In the evening I went to a fundraising dinner for the North Littleton Promise (NLP) ministry here in metro-Denver. This is an after-school outreach to children up through junior high age—primarily immigrant children—that provides fun activities, tutoring, and computer training wrapped up within a Christian framework. I gave a short talk, just about 10 minutes long, about why Christians care about these children. There were church leaders and also local community officials there among the 300 or so. The NLP team worked so hard to make the evening memorable: the servers were some of the young people of the ministry, and there was good Mexican food, along with wonderful Mariachi music! This event clearly demonstrated that the immigration issue is about people and not simply politics.
- November 9-10: I had the privilege of traveling to Fuller Seminary in Pasadena, CA to give their annual missiology lectures. It was a full schedule: the seminary chapel, the two formal lectures, a class for their MA in Global Leadership program, a colloquium with their missiology PhD’s plus a Q & A time, and a presentation in Spanish with a Q & A time (organized by Fuller’s Hispanic program). A packed two days, but very gratifying. The reception of what I had to say was positive, and the interaction with students and faculty was stimulating.
- November 17: Today was amazing. Leaders—Anglo, Hispanic, Afro-American, Asian-American, and Native American from all sorts of ministries, organizations, and backgrounds—gathered at a hotel at O’Hare airport in Chicago for an all-day national evangelical summit on immigration. We learned about what is going on with various kinds of initiatives (including several local churches, and two important mega-churches), heard from three DREAM Act young people, listened to reports from three large national Hispanic groups, and talked about how we can move forward together to raise the consciousness of evangelicals about this issue and move the conversation forward in constructive ways. It was a wonderful time of networking and mutual encouragement.
So, be encouraged! Look at how diverse all of these activities are and the various kinds of groups involved. God is doing amazing things. He is at work across denominational and racial boundaries to bring his church together to act on behalf of the ‘strangers’ in our midst.
One last thing: The seminary has published a little booklet, Thinking Christianly about Immigration. It is 60 pages long and costs $5.00. Noel Castellanos of the Christian Community Development Association wrote the Preface; I have two chapters; Craig Wong speaks as a Chinese-American and relates the theology of the Lord’s’ Supper to immigration; and Darrell Jackson, a British missiologist, talks about how the history of the church in Europe was defined by immigrants. It is a good read, wrapped up in an attractive presentation. If you would like copies, contact Frieda Craig at .
As we head into the Thanksgiving season. Let us be grateful that the Lord is moving, and let us ask him to continue to bless all the efforts of seeking compassion and justice for immigrants in this country.