On Sundays in the summer we have “Grill Your Own” for dinner. It’s a great time to get together in nice outdoor weather (fingers crossed it’s not raining because there is no “Plan B”) and make food together as one big family.
I love grilling. I really love to BBQ (the right way) – spending hours maintaining the proper temp and keeping the conditions perfect so those ribs turn out just the way you want them – juicy, delicious, and flavorful.
Grill Your Own is not like this at all.
Continue reading “Sunday Cookouts Jesus People Style”
Ecology and sustainability may conjure up images of agriculture, recycling, and saving the oceans. As an urban community, Jesus People seems far removed from caring for natural resources when in reality it’s all about doing what you can right where you are. We formed the Uptown Garden Collective to address some of these issues together, asking the question, “What can we do, with our limited space and resources, to be part of the solution instead of the problem?”
Continue reading “Introducing the Uptown Garden Collective”
For a week my husband and I had been sitting in that unknown space that exists when waiting for a diagnosis. Our doctor was obviously emotional when she said it. With a quivering voice she said the words I was dreading: “Your son has classic autism.”
Continue reading “Greyson and the Jesus People”
One of the best things about living in community is having the chance to sit down with your neighbors and talk about what’s real.
These conversations tend to be wide ranging, covering everything from who sells the best deep-dish pizza in Chicago to hearing about why someone has been living in community for the past two decades. The Jesus People Podcast was begun because we know that so many people would love to have the opportunity to hear about what’s going on at Jesus People but live too far away to show up, plop themselves on a couch, and hear about life in community.
If this sounds like something you’d like to be part of, follow this link and take a listen.
Parenting tiny humans is hard. Full stop. Parenting tiny humans during a pandemic is extra hard. Now, parenting a three-year-old, then giving birth, and parenting a newborn in the midst of a global pandemic while living in a community with 180 others – that’s just crazy!
Continue reading “Simple Living in a Smaller World”
There are few things that bring people together like laughter over a delicious meal. It has been a cornerstone of our life together: nourishing our bodies and our communal spirit. Cooking them together is another cornerstone. A little over a year ago, I joined the kitchen staff as a head cook. It is truly a joy to work with younger, and often newer, community members as we prepare meals for our friends and family.
Continue reading “The Jesus People Kitchen During Covid”
Night after night people would enter my car in droves, enslaved to the same lusts of money, sex, and power. They were looking for freedom, but it couldn’t be found. They were putting up fronts, but you could feel the pain and trauma wincing under their celebrations and smiles. Rich and poor were chasing the same dreams, doing the same dirt, having the same desires, but suffering vastly different consequences. I saw so much injustice. I felt too much pain. I heard too many cries for relief.
This was my life as a lonely taxi driver in New Zealand, driving the ever exciting graveyard shift, picking up anyone and everyone.
Continue reading “From New Zealand to Chicago”
It’s Advent Season and our celebrations look a little different this year but we are finding new, online ways to honor the birth of Jesus. Several of our in-house musicians from Grrr Records, including Glenn Kaiser and members of The Crossing, have put together some music videos with their takes on Christmas songs old and new.
Continue reading “Music to Celebrate Christmas”
My favorite time during the holiday season comes in the few days after Christmas. The gifts are unwrapped and put away, there are leftover cookies everywhere you turn, and people are still in the holiday mood but have already finished (or not finished) the long list of traditions and gatherings that can be both a blessing and a bane. Things get quiet. People sleep in. A calm descends and everyone in our house shuffles around in new slippers, clutching cups of coffee and chatting in the hallways, or visiting in each other’s rooms. This has always been part of my ultimate idea of Heaven – hanging out with loved ones, grateful for each other, and having enough time to just be with each other, without any planned activities or expectations. The Christmas decorations are still up so everything looks beautiful but the chaos is somewhere in the far off distance.
Continue reading “Christmas in the Time of Covid at Jesus People”
The weeks leading up to Christmas here at Cornerstone are a glimpse into what I imagine Santa’s workshop would be like. A constant bustle of deliveries, organizing toys, gift wrapping and agonizing over what to give teenagers. Between hanging holiday decorations and consuming copious amounts of caffeine, we strive to create a sense of normalcy and celebration for our shelter guests. After all, just because they are experiencing homelessness doesn’t mean they don’t deserve to have an amazing Christmas.
Continue reading “Christmas With Those Who Don’t Have a Home”