Sunday, May 28, 2006

Its time

So. its me, Dj, and I am finally writing on the blog. I am excitied to spend more time connecting with our community through technology. I am so far behind, its embarrising.
Anyway, we've been thinking about this whole day laborors thing, and I was frustrated because I got the feeling that as an english speaking female, there wasn't a whole lot I could do, but I am not going to cop out of this one. I am thinking maybe a few more women and men wouldn't be a bad thing, that we just could use a few more people. I wouldn't mind seeing us at Wellspring get connected with another church in Tomball, maybe the African American church, and go serve together to help the day labors kids or something. Now that school is out, I wonder what the kids are doing. I don't know, all I know is, is that I want to get my hands dirty. I have to be honest, I don't have near the passion for the poor and needy that I wish I could have, but sitting on my butt all summer isn't going to help the issue. Just some thoughts. What can we do??????????? Can we afford not to do???????????

Tuesday, May 23, 2006

the simple way

hey guys-here's another website to go check out.

some of us are currently reading the book "irresistible revolution". both the community and the book sprang from this idea of community and here's some of what they have on their website:

Our Mission is: "To Love God. To Love people. To Follow Jesus." We're giving that our best shot.

We are the simple way, a community of faith.
Each of us is created for community, and in the image of community. And yet everything in the world tries to rob us of this Divine gift.
The life of the simple way is the story of that struggle to love and to be loved.
The most radical thing we do is choose to love each other... again and again.
If you are a seeker of the Way, may our story feed you hope... or at least keep you from making all the same mistakes.
"Life in community is no less than a necessity for us, an inescapable 'must'... all life created by God exists in communal order and works toward community." -- Eberhard Arnold

these guys are also holding a weekend festival/get-together thingy...ha. here's what it's about:

PAPA FEST Some of you are aware and some are not… a summer gathering is in the works – P.A.P.A Festival – June 23-25, 2006. The People Against Poverty and Apathy Festival will be a convergence of communities and movements coming together to share, dream, and create together. Several hundred folks from across the country will be camping out in the hills of TN in a little village of subversive friendships to conspire together in learning workshops, roundtable talks, over campfires, and on hikes through the woods. The PAPA Fest has emerged again, after several years of feeling the itch to gather a larger group of friends and communities, more than we can accommodate at the annual “Family Reunion” hosted each February in Philly. We hope to have folks from a variety of dazzling circles of hope – from the Community of Communities and new monasticism, the Christian Community Development Association, Emergent, Jesus Radicals, the Relational Tithe, Ekklesia Project… we will set up a little village of learning, art, and music. So this is a mega-Family Reunion of sorts.

i don't know if any of our group would be interested in going, but i think i'm going to take a trip out there. it's only a weekend, and it might be a nice vacation. let me know what you guys think! hope everyone is having a good week...yay for summer :)

Friday, May 19, 2006

Fair Trade, The Environment, and stuff

Wellspring . . . Space

Don't blame Ken for this, I'm still trying to figure out how to contribute as me.

Fair Trade, The Environment, and stuff.

I found two links that might add to our current discussions on the environment and fair trade.

1) The first is a review for clothes on “tree-hugger (an eclectic review of things)” that discusses an environmentally conscientious clothing label glossed Howies. There are several things that caught my eye in this short article. One is how they do not consider their clothes to be fair trade and the reasons they give for that rational. Maybe you consider these reasons to be cop-outs but I defiantly think they add to the Fair Trade discussion. The second thing that stood out to me was their “Rocking chair test.” I think that the RCT should not only be used in making clothes but in our daily lives as well. Even if you don’t agree with the company’s fair trade and environmental policies there is something to be said for the philosophical idea of being content with your time on earth.

2) The second link is not really thought provoking and doesn’t even really say that much……. but it’s still pretty nifty. A few surfer/adventurers/hippie types took a truck outfitted for bio-diesel and ran it from Bend Oregon to Baja Mexico. The site has some info. on the why and the how they converted (the truck) and also has some journals and videos about their trip. I might be the only one in our little community who gets jazzed over this stuff but if you have a minute or two I think it’s worth looking at.

Sunday, May 14, 2006

Report from London

Wow! What an experience!! Everyday I've thought about our Wellspring community and wanted all of you to be here and to be having this experience with us. I don't have enough space or time to tell you everything now - but I will as soon as we get home.

We have met many fellow travelers in this journey of faith from around the globe. We have instantly experienced deep community. It's as if we've met family members that we haven't seen in a while. Our new friends from Germany are part of a church called Kubic. Kubic is so much like Wellspring that you would be amazed. The Germans have talked about the deep community they are experiencing in their church. We've had an instant connect with Rob and Amie who are Londoners. Rob and Amie are spiritual seekers who are just beginning to pursue Christ. Today we went to their church (they've only been attending sense Lent) St. Luke's Anglican. It was a wonderful experience (connecting the old and the new). Rob is the artist that did the Doxology paintings that were on exhibit in Houston last fall. Rob and Amie have become part of our family.
I can't wait to see all of you and tell you about you're new relatives.
Grace and peace,

Thursday, May 11, 2006

the rich young man

so the more and more time we've been spending discussing some of the monstrosities going on in our world right now really make me stop and think. i blogged on my own page about most of it (which all of you are more than welcome to read), but i want to know what you guys think. it's a touchy feel free to yell at me if necessary.

when Jesus was talking to the rich, young man and he told him to go and sell you think he was talking to us too? when he said "everything" did he seriously mean everything? i'm pretty sure i know the answer to this, but maybe i don't want to hear it. perhaps i'm ignoring it even. seeing as how i don't technically own most of my things (thanks mom and dad) i'm not sure that i could just walk out and sell it all right now. i'd need a little something to eat and something to get around with-but that's it right? being a "token-twenty something" kinda sucks sometimes. i'm in that part of my life where all i care about is me and what makes me happy. i hate it. and i'm kinda mad at Jesus for saying this because now it's got me all torn up inside.

i don't want to let it go either. i really, truly want to know where this leaves us. i don't want this to be some whim or some phase. i really, truly want to live the way Christ is asking me to. hmmm...alright, help me out guys.

Monday, May 08, 2006

Praying for the London Crew

Thanks to those of you who will be keeping us in your prayers May 9-16th. Here's the summary I gave to the team about what we'd be doing. Perhaps it will help you as you pray:

Purpose of the trip – We’ve called this a “different type of mission trip.” In fact, mission agencies often send teams to provide what they call “member care” to missionaries on the field. While the folks we’ll be meeting with are not under the “umbrella” of a mission agency they are no less missionary so our purpose has to do with supporting them and their ministries. But we are also creating a new kind of learning experience. While it’s not a conference with workshops at pre-set times, we will be sharing learning via conversation and specific dialogues. So frame this experience either way or make up a new word for it! The agenda, like the participants continues to “emerge”. We know that we are going to cover four areas:

Doxology -- how God can further use an art project to both create spiritual dialogue and perhaps a source of funding;

Protest4 -- assisting those who are engaged with advocacy regarding human trafficking;

missions messaging – how we can tell the stories of the emerging church around the world so that the established church understands and supports it (and we’ll be experiencing examples of this)

ministering to ministers – each of the team members have something to offer the folks we’re meeting with and they have something for us on our journey as well, this facet of the trip is really up to the team members.

Our U.S. team consists of Ken, Becky, me, Larry Jay . . . all folks you know. Larry is starting a new ministry called re:creation whereby he's going to connect folks with spiritual experiences in the great outdoors. San Francisco may be the next stop on the Doxology tour and he and Robin Paoli are representing that venue. Robin was a pastor at Houston's Harbor Church and is now living in San Francisco and looking for what God is going to do next regarding her leading a community of faith. She's a marketing guru and will especially be helpful with Doxology and Protest4 discussions. Trisha Taylor is a therapist and an ordained minister who is married to a Clear Lake pastor. She's going to be very busy with the "ministering to ministers" portion of the agenda. Steve Johnson is a former missionary who has experience with assisting artists in becoming more self-supporting so that they can then support the church. He's also into relief and development work. He's from University Baptist out in Clear Lake. While Margaret Menger of Copperfield is not traveling with us, she's been super supportive of what we're doing and will be stateside if we need her help with marketing questions that may come up.

There is a whole other crew coming from Austin and Germany so it should be really interesting.

Oh! and Becky has graciously consented to coordinate the kitchen for the 20-30 people who may be at the table at any given meal. There's a prayer request if I ever heard one!!

Thanks for being our supportive community!!


Saturday, May 06, 2006

God's Dream?

What do you think God's dream for the world might be ?

Thursday, May 04, 2006

The National Labor Committee

Hey guys,

In response to what we're blogging about lately, I've found some interesting web-sites:

The first one is a whole document put out by the NLC about what's going on in Jordan. It's 168 pages, and is painful to try to go through, but informative nonetheless:

This is the actual NLC website, and I think it's full of a lot of the info. we're interested in:

I also simply typed in "free trade" on and it came up with several websites. One in particular was on the NY Times site and a specific article dealing with conditions in Jordan. It's titled "An Ugly Side of Free Trade: Sweatshops in Jordan" and definitely worth reading. I was shocked to see names like: Target, Wal-mart, Jones Apparel (which owns Gloria Vanderbilt and Jones New York), JC Penney, Sears, Gap, and Kohls.

Below are some quotes from the article, but I definitely recommend going and reading it.

"Some people are always making allegations," said Karim Saifi, the owner of United Garment Manufacturing, a factory near Amman that workers criticized for long hours and wage violations. "As far as we know, we follow all the labor laws here. If we were not abiding by all of the local Jordan laws, we would not be able to operate."

But Mohammed Z., who has worked for more than a year at the Paramount Garment Factory, said that even though he worked more than 100 hours a week — normally from 7 to midnight seven days a week — the company refused to pay him overtime when he did not meet production targets. He asked that his last name be withheld for fear of retribution.

Mohammed Saiful Islam, 30, a Bangladeshi who was production manager at Western Garment, said that several times the workers had to work until 4 a.m., then sleep on the factory's floor for a few hours, before resuming work at 8 a.m.
"The workers got so exhausted they became sick," he said. "They could hardly stay awake at their machines."

This is crazy. I can't believe that all of this was going on and I never knew. It's frustrating and exhausting. I'm so small and insignificant, how can I possibly do anything? Now is decision time...something has to be done. I can't live in my naive little world anymore. I'm hoping to find some companies that aren't involved in all of this, and ways to help support them. I have a feeling Karen could help with this. In the end, I know of one thing I can do....pray. I suppose that's the best place to start right now. This will get better. It has to.


Late notice-but if you haven't heard we'll be meeting at Starbucks at 249 and Jones this Thursday night. Normal time (7:00). Maybe we can continue Ken's question on free trade.

Wednesday, May 03, 2006

Free Trade?

O.K. so the blog has gone stagnant. Would you help me revive it?

We've been talking some about a subject that I don't know much about. What do we do about the many people who work around the world in "sweat shops" for very little pay?

What would Jesus do if he were living today? I want to do something - but what? This week I bought a new computer from Dell - (at a great price) I naively assumed it would be made in the US. No - it was put together in Indonesia. I wonder what Dell pays its workers in Indonesia? At the same time I couldn't have gotten the computer without the good deal. What do you think an apprentice of Jesus would do?