Although there very well may be one that I have just been unable to find, it seems that there is no clergy association in West Rogers Park. There is a rather large one for all of Chicago, but not one for just this area. Of all people, shouldn’t clergy be having the discussion about how to improve our community and help those in need? After all, we are the church, aren’t we? Ok, so let’s set that aside for a minute.
This morning I was at the gym where I generally do my best thinking besides out in nature. The endorphins were pumping and I was thinking about how many people are struggling with unemployment in our congregation alone, let alone right outside our front door. I had 200 lb dumbbells in each arm on the bench (ok, ok, so I’m exaggerating) when all of the sudden it hit me: between all of the people in the churches and houses of worship in north Chicago and the surrounding suburbs, there must be thousands of people not only looking for work, but also looking for employees! I put the weights down and went over to the drinking fountain letting the idea roll around in my head for a few moments when it occurred to me that a possible way to bring these people together would be with an online job exchange. Now the wheels were really turning and I started to think, “Wait!” – this could be a function of a new clergy association in our area!
Well, you know me, I don’t do much small. I soon realized that a clergy association was not a big enough or good enough solution. It dawned on me that we should have an interfaith network that includes the members of the churches and houses of worship (and not just the clergy) so that we all can have an outlet to work together on community needs. “Why stop at jobs!?” I thought. With that many people working together, we could really make a difference! So, there will be leg work to do reaching out to area clergy and getting them on board, but the first step was to start thinking of a website. I reserved the domain name www.ncecaa.org which stands for North Chicago Ecumenical Community Action Association. I am going to start putting the website together. If any of you would be interested in being a webmaster, managing the job board, or any of the myriad tasks available, please let me know! This isn’t my idea – God gave it to all of us!
Just imagine Tri-C being the pioneers of something huge that affects change and brings hope to the lives of many. I never cease to be amazed at the way God can make lemonade out of lemons!