Posts Tagged ‘Mustard Seed’

Português: Cerimônia de canonização do frade b...

Português: Cerimônia de canonização do frade brasileiro Frei Galvão celebrada pelo papa Bento XVI no Campo de Marte em São Paulo, Brasil. (fragment) (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

(stumpy) christ of the ozarks

(stumpy) christ of the ozarks (Photo credit: fallsroad)

Who knew when I followed this calling that it would be so serendipitous.  What is that you say? Well, Pope Benedict XVI the hardest working Pontiff to regress the Roman Catholic Church has decided to celebrate the 50th anniversary of the Reformation (a.k.a Vatican II) by declaring a year of faith and new evangelization. What does this mean?

My sabbatical journey began this summer (okay it began longer than that, but I like to fight God). It came with a gusting of the Holy Spirit to quit being a fence sitter. You see, I was comfortable in my vocation at The Mustard Seed, at one point I used discernment to attempt to jump into church life…yet God answered by a Job like situation where the church that nurtured me back into structured religion attacked my children and my Poppa Bear instincts reared up and I walked away.

I took this as a sign that the Seed was to be my life vocation, this was forgetting vocation is more than just a pay cheque or an employer. It is the soul call of God upon your life, it is a journey of life. It was also forgetting what I have begun to call the rule of 3rds. Traditionally we live our life in thirds. The formation years are the first 30, the next 30 is a new adventure and the last 30 is centered on ending well and preparing the next generation (okay that last one is ongoing, but I think you are getting the point).

I am in the midst of my 2/3. I am a father of two blessed children, a husband to a wife that I truly do not know why she is with me. Yet I am called to be a co-journeyer with individuals at the time of discovery (to make my own little corner of this world a little better) and transformation. So yes as a family we took the leap of faith and I went back to Northwestern to complete my Master of Divinity, with a thesis on why Mary of Nazareth matters…and then onto my chaplaincy training.

Yet as I returned to Mass with my hunny, as we knelt for the prayers, for the Novena and adoration of the sacred heart, as we meditated and sat in the silence and then the priest announced the coming of the year of faith. He spoke about intrinsic and extrinsic faith. Extrinsic being one who lives out the works of Christ in the world out of fear of Hell, yet there is that deepening of faith, of intrinsic worth where the mystery of the Holy is in communion with us. This is my prayer for all of us during this year that we will discover the intrinsic faith and by residing within we will authentically transform our world, we will authentically disciple young and old alike to truly be the Body of the Cosmic Christ here on earth.

The idea that my sabbatical year started off with a leap of faith, and then the coming of the year of faith during it, which brought me back to Mass is quite ironic, symbolic, and neither is lost on me during this journey with my family within my household walls and throughout the world.



Whew…I knew when I sat in the 102 boardroom at my “going away” party on August 23, 2012 that the ginormity of the leap of faith my family was taking would not hit me the next day.  See I had taken my last week’s holidays and some OT to be able to take a week off before my last official day. Last official day you say of what?

The ministry God has blessed me with in walking alongside people growing hoping, building community and supporting change for the last 13 years at The Mustard Seed…where I have served on a college crew, dinner crew, volunteer, ran a youth ministry, worked as full-time Street Level Staff, relief staff, Street Level Manager, a Case Work Specialist, a prayer partner, donor, and my last call was as a Community Living Properties Team Lead helping to facilitate community in our two buildings, our Permanent Supportive Housing program and renewing our Missional Housing program.

Things were trucking along grand. I still remember it was about 11 years ago praying the rosary when I heard God’s voice calling me to renew the church. In my Bible College days with church plants all the rage I thought that’s what God wanted me to do. It was not, it was truly to be an agent of renewal.

As a minister within those exiting poverty, as a vocal advocate to the broader community educating all of God’s children (regardless of religious or non-religious affiliation)…It was a very Franciscan call upon my heart as I spoke and acted in a way to make this corner of my world a little bit better.  Only time will tell if that truly happened.

As I sat with what true community is in ministry, a gathering of guests, residents, staff, co-workers, volunteers, and executives…looking at the gathering I had to smile for it truly was a Kingdom moment as someone who looked in at the gathering would be hard pressed to tell who had lived the experience and come out the tunnel of light, and who was called to walk into the darkness and accompany out of the darkness.

13 years ago I had no clue why God placed me at The Mustard Seed, with my social gospel and liberation theology ways…bordering on what some call universalism yet still knowing the Cosmic Christ resonating within my soul.

This was my ground of formation, but formation and learning in life are ongoing and life long. The seed was planted at the tender age of 8 to shake this world up and speak up/act for what I believe in…through my writing this became normative.

Then returning to the institutional church at 19 at the crossroads of crisis and hearing the still small voice letting me know it would be okay.

Then feeling the same voice as serving my first tray of food at the Seed to a former high school classmate and stating welcome home.

The seed was planted…

it now germinates…

The same still small voice calling me to use what has been learned to become equipped to journey with brothers and sisters as they reach the point of transformation in life.

So I have entered a time of sabbatical…to equip… for I am completing my Master of Divinity through Northwestern, then onto my Clinical Pastoral Education Unit so that I can become a chaplain to walk in hospitals, hospice, correction facilities, or extended care for in the heart of these places the Holy Mystery is working. Where I journeyed with those in healing, the germination of that planted seed is not learning and beginning the walk with those transforming.

Like a caterpillar emerging from the cocoon as a butterfly.

Move on in and watch your world change:

Gil Tucker tours Missional Housing on Global TV Newshour: Here

All potential world changers hear ye hear ye.

Come live on-site in an intentional life changing community while you attend post-secondary!

Art school * University * College * Trade School * Bible School * Upgrading * ESL

Missional Housing2012_2OPTIMIZED-3

The Mustard Seed is a Christian non-profit organization that delivers basic services, housing and employment programs to those in need and partners with the community to address the root causes of poverty.
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March 2012
Mountain Mover Prayer Calendar

Dear friends,

During the month of March, we’re asking you to pray for The Mustard Seed’s Permanent Supportive Housing. PSH is in the process of transformation from a transitional housing model to a supportive long-term community for our 30 residents. We secured our licensing for this new venture on January 31, 2012. The residents elected their first Resident Assistant five months ago, with the next election coming up in 30 days. God’s guidance would be greatly appreciated.

So how else can you help? One of the main areas of community support we need is for Housing volunteers, both downtown and in our Aftercare program. It is our deep desire for community members and groups who would be willing to come alongside our residents and aid them in healthy community ventures. Together, we can support change in a supportive and interdependent way.

Contrary to popular belief winter is not over, so please also continue to pray for our folks out there on the street. It may seem like spring during the day, but it’s only February and it’s still cold at night. In addition, the milder weather has brought an increase in Cold and Flu among guests and staff at The Mustard Seed, with many staff continuing to work during this busy season. Please pray for the health of The Mustard Seed staff downtown, Foothills Shelter and in Edmonton.

We thank you for your prayers and support as we move forward.

To view March’s Mountain Mover Prayer Calendar, please click here.

Don’t forget to join us on Twitter prayer at #MMPRAYER and to sign up to receive prayer requests.

Bill Nixon

Church Engagement

Copyright © 2012 The Mustard Seed, All rights reserved.
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The Mustard Seed

102 11 Ave SE

Calgary, AB T2G0X5

The Mustard Seed is a Christian non-profit organization that delivers basic services, housing and employment programs to those in need and partners with the community to address the root causes of poverty.
Friday Night Fun

Friday Night Fun

Every week, those who come to The Mustard Seed gather to play games, eat snacks and enjoy each other’s company.

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Working Again

After immigrating from Ethiopia to Calgary, Dawit faced many challenges, but with determination and a helping hand from The Mustard Seed he is building a better future for himself.

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Housing Helps

Housing Helps

With the help of The Mustard Seed, Ron moved into the first home he’s been able to call his own in eight years.

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Copyright © 2012 The Mustard Seed, All rights reserved.

Growing hope, building community and supporting change is not just the responsibility of any one agency, but rather of each and every Calgarian to renew our communities as open places of welcome, healing, and renewal of community life.

Join with The Mustard Seed to transform Calgary:

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