From Dick Staub
From Dick Staub
I am looking into participating with a CSA (Community Supported Agriculture), and I am interested in doing it for our family but also interested in looking at options for encouraging members of our church and community to do it as well. A new friend was telling me about her experience with helping a church become a drop-off site for a grower, and members of the community would come to the church to pick up their weekly produce. They had to gather something like twenty subscribers to qualify as a drop-off location, but it proved to be a wonderful connection between the church, their neighbors, and local farm.
Does anyone have experience doing this? Anyone in the Shoreline area interested in exploring this?
I grew up shopping at the Pike Place market with my parents, and we were on a first-name basis with the growers, sellers, coffee roasters (at a little storefront coffee shop called Starbucks), and butchers who supplied our home with food. Not to mention the artists and craftsmen whose pictures and utensils and jewelry we used. I also remember shopping at Safeway and QFC, but the market community was the place where I felt connected to what we bought and ate and used. I don’t see the massive carts at Costco giving my kids that same sense of connection to what we consume, and that is one of my motivations (not to mention great, fresh food!) in pursuing this.
From Local Harvest:
CSA reflects an innovative and resourceful strategy to connect local farmers with local consumers; develop a regional food supply and strong local economy; maintain a sense of community; encourage land stewardship; and honor the knowledge and experience of growers and producers working with small to medium farms. CSA is a unique model of local agriculture whose roots reach back 30 years to Japan where a group of women concerned about the increase in food imports and the corresponding decrease in the farming population initiated a direct growing and purchasing relationship between their group and local farms. This arrangement, called “teikei” in Japanese, translates to “putting the farmers’ face on food.” This concept traveled to Europe and was adapted to the U.S. and given the name “Community Supported Agriculture” at Indian Line Farm, Massachusetts, in 1985. As of January 2005, there are over 1500 CSA farms across the US and Canada.
CSA is a partnership of mutual commitment between a farm and a community of supporters which provides a direct link between the production and consumption of food. Supporters cover a farm’s yearly operating budget by purchasing a share of the season’s harvest. CSA members make a commitment to support the farm throughout the season, and assume the costs, risks and bounty of growing food along with the farmer or grower. Members help pay for seeds, fertilizer, water, equipment maintenance, labor, etc. In return, the farm provides, to the best of its ability, a healthy supply of seasonal fresh produce throughout the growing season. Becoming a member creates a responsible relationship between people and the food they eat, the land on which it is grown and those who grow it.
One of our favorite breakfasts here at the Haub house is something we call “puff”. Four eggs, one cup flour, one cup milk and some melted butter make for a very tasty morning treat. The big kids typically help with the measuring and mixing, so they know the recipe: 411, as we call it.
This morning, Mercy really, really wanted a puff for breakfast. I was happy to make one, so I asked her to check and see if we had enough eggs. She walked over to the refrigerator, opened the door and pulled out the carton of eggs.
“We only have three eggs,” she reported sadly, looking inside. “Well,” I replied, “I guess we can’t make a puff today.”
Mercy stood there, still holding the open carton in the middle of the kitchen, looking down at the three eggs. “But Mommy,” she finally pleaded, “you could just be like Jesus…”
When Doug and I were first married, good friends gave us a really nice bottle of Medeira. They told us to wait a year to drink it, and in spite of my pleading on numerous occasions to crack it open that first year, Doug held fast to our friend’s instructions. Doug proudly reported to our friends that next year that we had indeed kept it for the year, and at that point our friend told us: “You know, if you let it age five years, it will be even better.” I was crushed, as good alcohol was not in the budget for us and patience is not my strong suite (and determination is Doug’s). And so we waited.
When the possibility of buying a house here in Shoreline first emerged, Doug decided that when we closed on the house, we would celebrate by opening the bottle of Medeira and sipping it in front of a fire in our new home. Tonight, we toast the very good gift of God that is our new home. May it be a place of generous listening and hospitality; a place of compassion and conversation; a place of laughter and imagination.
“Even now, declares the LORD,
“return to me with all your heart,
with fasting and weeping and mourning.”
Rend your heart
and not your garments.
Return to the LORD your God,
for he is gracious and compassionate,
slow to anger and abounding in love,
and he relents from punishing.
Who knows? He may turn and have pity
and leave behind a blessing—
grain offerings and drink offerings
for the LORD your God.
Blow the trumpet in Zion,
declare a holy fast,
call a sacred assembly.
Gather the people,
consecrate the assembly;
bring together the elders,
gather the children,
those nursing at the breast.
Let the bridegroom leave his room
and the bride her chamber.
Let the priests, who minister before the LORD,
weep between the temple porch and the altar.
Let them say, “Spare your people, O LORD.
Do not make your inheritance an object of scorn,
a byword among the nations.
Why should they say among the peoples,
‘Where is their God?’ ”
The LORD is compassionate and gracious,
slow to anger, abounding in love.
He will not always accuse,
nor will he harbor his anger forever;
he does not treat us as our sins deserve
or repay us according to our iniquities.
For as high as the heavens are above the earth,
so great is his love for those who fear him;
as far as the east is from the west,
so far has he removed our transgressions from us.
As a father has compassion on his children,
so the LORD has compassion on those who fear him;
for he knows how we are formed,
he remembers that we are dust.
I spent a portion of last night at a nearby pharmacy waiting for some prescriptions to be filled to treat Mercy’s double ear infection. As I waited the “twenty-minute” hour and a half (why does it take so long to pour the medicine in the little jars???), I watched the steady stream of people in need of all sorts of medications pass through this little corner of my local Walgreens.
There was the older woman who received the news from the pharmacist that she was no longer listed as covered in their system. The woman was outraged and spewed off something about “calling her attorney”. She opted for only one of the two prescriptions she had submitted because she did not have a few hundred dollars to pay for the other.
There was the forty-something woman who could barely stand, as she hunched over apparently hugging a surgical incision. “What do they think I am made of?” she asked to a friend over the phone. “I have to go in to work tomorrow. I just got the promotion and I can’t afford to not go in.” As she got to the window, she gave the pharmacy technician her name and muttered something about them please hurrying because she just had surgery. She looked so totally miserable and captive to whatever pressures existed at her job. In a season of so many layoffs, it was understandable yet depressing to see.
Then there was the woman who was my age with the little girl clutching a pink purse. This woman spent the most time at the counter as an employee patiently walked her through a bunch of complications with having her prescriptions filled because they were covered by DSHS. While the woman had been prescribed one drug, the pharmacist informed her she would have to take a different one because it was the only one her plan covered. Not only that, but there was some other problem with her paying cash for something because of a DSHS regulation. She probably spent thirty minutes at the window trying to solve her coverage issues.
There were the others who, like me, walked in and had the computer give all the green lights. The small Asian woman. The handsome man with the shiny cell phone. Our only inconvenience was a wait.
I have never been uninsured, though I have walked through an insurance company’s attempt to deny coverage of a week-long hospital stay. Last night I was so grateful for the generous insurance coverage we receive from the Covenant denomination that is paid for by the congregation we serve. It is no small thing these days to have that kind of coverage, and my heart ached for those last night for whom every trip to the pharmacy is either a guessing game, a battle, or a humiliation.
Sure, smaller churches will still exist, but in fewer and fewer numbers as dying churches are replaced not by vibrant church plants full of people forced to build a community from the ground up and so learn all the lessons along the way, but by video venue franchises- prepackaged church-in-a-box. And I’m telling you- there will be fewer and fewer men and women (most certainly fewer women) who ever learn to preach, who ever get the experience of working with others to discern what God is saying to their local body through Spirit and Word and prayerfully struggle through how they can creatively communicate that as well over the course of weeks, months and years of life together.
From Bob Hyatt
The other day I was loading the kids into the van, and the way that works is the big kids get into their seats in the very back row while I put Elijah in, then I come to other side and sit on the folded down middle seat while I buckle the two of them in the back. I was in the process of doing this and was working on securing Aaron’s Britax when Mercy proclaimed: “Mommy, you are Pastor Erika now.”
While that terminology may have been used at times in Los Angeles it was not frequent or consistent, and someone here in Seattle must have used that title while talking to Mercy about her mom.
“Yes, Mercy, that’s right. I am Pastor Erika here.”
She looked at me with a big smile as if the idea of that made her proud.
“And Mercy,” I added looking intently into her eyes, “you could grow up to be Pastor Mercy someday.”
Her eyes widened and she flew out of her seat and into my arms. “Oh, thank you Mommy.”
This afternoon I have the opportunity to guest lecture at Seattle Pacific University for a dear friend, Bob Drovdahl, who is a professor there. I will be speaking on my experience with adult education and I am very much looking forward to meeting the students and hearing more about their hearts for ministry in the church. I hope that i will have something of value to offer them from my own experience, and it will be fun to be on the SPU campus (a school I considered attending before deciding on North Park).
Scot McKnight recently posted some thoughts on the rise of the “NeoReformed“. He writes:
The NeoReformed, for a variety of reasons, some of them good, don’t recognize that evangelicalism as a village green. Instead, they want to build a gate at the gate-less village green and require Reformed confessions and credentials to enter onto the village green. Put differently, they think the only legitimate and the only faithful evangelicals are Reformed. Really Reformed. In other words, they are “confessing” evangelicals. The only true evangelical is a Reformed evangelical. They are more than happy to call into question the legitimacy and fidelity of any evangelical who doesn’t believe in classic Reformed doctrines, like double predestination.
In effect, the NeoReformed are a new form of Fundamentalism, so one might describe them accurately as the NeoFundamentalists. Which means they seem to need a trend or an opponent upon whom they can vent their frustrations (see Rene Girard). This results in two clear traits: the exaltation of some peripheral doctrine to central status and the demonization of a person. The goal in such cases seems to be to win at all costs.
I have heard that the influence of Mars Hill on the students at SPU has been significant. One student told me that for young women on campus, there is a heavy trend away from considering careers or many ministry callings because of that particular church’s teaching on the role of women at church and in the home. It will be interesting to see if that trend is evident in this class today.
On his blog, Scot asks why younger adults are so drawn to what he calls the NeoReformed movement as evident in places like Mars Hill Church. Desire for certainty, hierarchy, and heavy leadership are a few observations some have made that seem to resonate with me, but I am not totally sure.
We often talk to the kids about how we hope to someday live in South Africa for a season. They will bring up Africa on occasion, and we will imagine together what life there might look like someday. Yesterday, Aaron and I ended up in the bathroom after quite a search for a certain toy he had misplaced.
“Aaron, I’m sorry but I just can’t find it!” I finally said.
He looked at me, and then sighed. “I think maybe we left it in South Africa…”