A few days after the completion of the abbey intensive course, we newly acquainted graduate students began the second intensive course on mission. Exemplifying the apostolate tenet of the theology program, students spent the week touring local nonprofits that focus on mission to the poor of the greater Seattle area. The texts we read for the course centered on the idea of a missional community.
The first place we visited was New Horizons Ministries in Belltown. New Horizons reaches out to youth who are involved in street activity. The goal for the organization is to cultivate relationships with teens in the area in order to show them a renewing relationship with Jesus Christ and to ultimately encourage and train youth to leave street life.
Recently, New Horizons has invested in a coffee shop that they call, Street Bean. This shop will be an avenue by which reforming street teens will get work experience and references that can propel them into better jobs in the open market.
For our second stop, we toured Quest Church, a local missional church located in Queen Anne. Quest Church emphasizes global mission work as well as multicultural ministry. A couple of the pastors were available for a question-and-answer session, and we were able to learn of their plan for global and local mission.
In a global context, Quest Church is actively partnered with organizations who seek to implement Micah 6, “to love justice, seek mercy, kindness…” (look this up later)
Quest Church seeks to impact the local community by running a nonprofit coffee shop for the community to meet, drink quality coffee at a low price, and pursue the arts. In addition, Quest Church is interested in the needs of the homeless in the Ballard and Queen Anne community. (find more info on this)
The last destination for the apostolate intensive was Urban Impact. Located in the heart of Rainier Valley, Urban Impact seeks to improve the quality of life of residents in the community. Urban Impact arranged space and equipment to create a gym for the community with the idea that physical fitness is a key aspect to improving the quality of life.
Urban Impact is associated with Emerald City Bible Fellowship, a cross-cultural bible church located next door. Embassy stresses the importance of different ethnicities within a missional community.
On the whole, my fellow graduate students and I received a lasting experience learning the importance of being missionally sent to help those in need by the power of God the Father, the incarnate Son, and the Holy Spirit.