Dr. Dennis Onieal discussed the events of 9/11 as a first responder. the former head of the Jersey City Fire Department and currently Deputy U.S. Fire Administrator for the U.S. Fire Administration, was called to help following the attack. He discussed the clean-up effort and the responsibility of civilians during such a crisis. He called attention to the issues that were not publicized but essential in the recovery effort. In addition, he talked about the post-9/11 changes in instruction for policemen, firefighters, etc. in responding to attacks. In addition, he shared how he handled his own feelings after working at the 9/11 site.
Kim Davidson, Director, Center for Public Service, Gettysburg College, recently returned from a study tour of El Paso, TX and Juarez, Mexico maintains that current policy toward Mexican and Central American immigrants is based on racism, and that it is made more acute by the lack of transparency in the practices of I.C.E. (Immigration and Customs Enforcement). She suggests several things that advocates can do, including making their voices heard and providing legal services to those wrongly detained.
United Lutheran Seminary Master of Divinity student Michael McMullen shares his ministry of providing liturgical robes to pastors, choirs and other organizations in need through the non-profit organization Robe Gifting International. Based in Harrisburg, Pennsylvania, Robe Gifting International collects, refurbishes and distributes used liturgical robes around the globe to those in need at no cost.
Justine Odila talks about his journey from the Democratic Republic of the Congo to the United States. While in the Congo, he worked to help child soldiers to return to school, their families and mental stability as well as helping other young children to not become soldiers in the first place. This work resulted in him being arrested but he escaped to Zambia where he lived in a refugee camp for 17 years where he carried assisting those around him. After a 5-year vetting process, he was finally able to come to the United States via a resettlement program. He presently works at Walmart, works part-time as a mental health counselor, and attends classes at the community college.
To learn more about the Democratic Republic of the Congo you can begin here:
Mark Jalbert, Director of Bakewell Farm, shares his love of bread and explores ways that Bakewell Farm is using bread to build community. From the science of fermentation to sharing a loaf with a neighbor or those in need. You can almost smell the loaves come out of the oven.
Phil Roth talks about his experience as a volunteer in the PAX program sponsored by the Mennonite Church as his alternative service for the military in the mid-1950s. He described the history of the program as well as the challenges for him and his fellow workers.
Dr. David Crowner, Professor Emeritus, Gettysburg College and Co-Chair, Project Gettysburg-Leon, describes how charitable organizations can avoid simple charity, if this means patronizing those they serve, and making them dependent; and instead aim for sustainable development. In other words, they help people help themselves. Project Gettysburg-Leon has established eight criteria for this process. Most import is the need to listen and build partnerships.
Pastor Yehiel Curry of Shekinah Chapel describes his own path to ordained ministry, and his work with the Lutheran Church in developing a relevant, exciting ministry, geared toward Black men and their families in Chicago. He is dynamic, passionate and wise, and you will love his story!
Gerald Christianson celebrates his 40th year as a host of the “Seminary Explores” with this interview of Amanda Garner. She maintains that literacy is not only a scandal, it’s an epidemic. About 800 million persons world-wide and 93 million Americans are functionally illiterate; that is, they read below a fourth-grade level, leading to job loss, poverty, unproductivity. With a limited budget, she depends on trained volunteers who can relate to persons and work with their needs.
Father Recla, then a pastor in New York, took on the role of chaplain in one of the morgues where remains were sent during recovery operations after 9/11, often accompanying body bags to their final destination--sometimes with police or fire escorts. Little was said during these sad journeys, but Recla sensed there was both laughing and crying in the silence.