Saturday, December 1, 2012
The Weight of Mercy: a Novice Pastor on the City Streets by Deb Richardson-Moore
A humorous and touching examination of what it means to live out Christ's command to welcome the stranger Ministry can be messy, complicated, and bewildering. Whether responding to the church alarm mysteriously and repeatedly going off in the middle of the night, firing a kitchen assistant with a habit of buying drugs from parishioners, or interacting with the Chicken-Eatin' Preacher from West Greenville, pastor Deb Richardson-Moore quickly admits that there is a great deal they do not teach you in seminary.
In this frank and engaging account of answering a call later in life, Richardson-Moore brings the reader into the world of her work at the Triune Mercy Center in Greenville, South Carolina. The result is an honest look at the complications and difficulties surrounding her first years of ministry to homeless men and women suffering from mental illness, crack addictions, and alcoholism. At the same time, it is a humorous and deeply touching account of God's grace manifested in the most remarkable of ways, whether in the inadvertent befriending of a mugger or in the unexpected witnessing of an addict tenderly washing another's wounded foot.
In The Weight of Mercy, Richardson-Moore weaves a story that is difficult to forget, due both to its engaging characters and also its radical vision of what the Christian church could look like if it truly lived out Christ's command to welcome the stranger.
My Take: This book tells you the true meaning of missions. It shows you the warts and all of ministry in an innercity that is aimed at the homeless community. It tells the tale of the successes and mistakes of a rookie minister in this field. It is a book that you should read to give you the knowledge that missions are not just overseas in other countries but there are mission fields right here in how midst.
I received a review copy of this book from Kregel in exchange for my honest opinion.