It was inspiring to see a real DIY ethic take shape (with a decidedly artistic and benevolent bent) the other morning as we gathered with the rest of the Hillside community.
Let me explain.
For the last while we've intentionally been stripping back our "regular programming" and re-examining what we value as the gathering of people we call Hillside. The hope has been that in freeing up our time and stretching some boundaries we might stimulate an environment where the freedom and flexibility to respond to needs on a personal level can take place more easily.
It's easy for needs to slip through the cracks when people are confused about which ministry/program is supposed to "take care" of what needs. If you can meet the need yourself (and preferably with a few friends too) why not just go ahead and spread the love?!
So when we showed up on Sunday morning to find empty shopping carts all over the stage and notes on everyone's chairs (explaining the London Food Bank was running lower than ever on donations) I was pretty stoked.
Nobody asked permission.† Nobody created a ministry and then "sponsored" the call to action. Instead, some people saw a simple need and used some creativity to express that need to the rest of their community. I say bravo.
Let's fill those shopping carts!
• If you live in London, but don't feel like stopping by Hillside on Sunday to help us fill our carts, the London Food Bank is doing it's annual "Curbside Drive for Food" from June 12-19 where you can leave your donations out with your garbage/recyling.
• For my Victoria readers: If you haven't checked out the fbook listing for the Street Café "Just Desserts" evening you definitely should.
† I've heard a few people caution that such "guerilla" tactics when it comes to "ministry" can become distracting and unhelpful. So long as the distraction is away from ourselves and toward loving our God/neighours/enemy I'm all for being kept on my toes. There's a time and place for everything and I trust Hillsiders to know what's appropriate. Furthermore, I believe we'll continue to see a decline in the amount of time we devote to "announcements" on Sunday mornings as we increasingly turn to word-of-mouth, facebook, twitter, and the website to spread ideas throughout our community.