Hey folksies. My names Charles. I’ve been lurking on and off here for quite awhile and finally got around to joining this excellent community of quality folk. And thus I have to introduce myself.
But let’s preface some of the particulars of where I come from and where I’m going with a much more fun sense of who I am. I’m a very vocal, people oriented person. I love good conversation and do most of my best thinking vocally while in dialogue with others. Which unfortunately means I’m not a very good writer (hello, text ridden blog world), so part of what excites me about YAR here is a chance to engage in dialogue with intelligent people in a new medium, I think I’ll find that stretching. I like to laugh, I like to smile and I’ll hug just about anyone (though I’m now getting better at recognizing appropriate hug settings :P). I enjoy good beer, fine wine, nerdy boardgames and plenty of other geeky activities (especially those involving other people).
I’m a Mennonite and was raised as such. I spent about six years in the Mennonite education system graduating from Goshen with a degree in Bible/Religion. And I’m going back in the fall for an MDiv from AMBS. I just can’t escape.
I spent last year in Vail, CO recovering from college. I worked as a Rental Tech for a small owner operated ski shop in the Village and spent a lot of time hitting the slopes. Got fairly good at it too. However a season in the service sector in such a rich/white/luxury spot in Vail combined with a very real lack of good friends and a local Menno church drove me to, and provided me the energy for, tackling a year of service with MVS.
So since last June I’ve been with the MVS house in DC working as a Policy Advocate at the National Coalition for the Homeless. I viewed the year in two parts, both actually doing something for awhile that wasn’t me focused (as opposed to schoolin and ridin) and as a last check to see if there was something outside of the church world that interested me. Turns out, I’m headin back to seminary. Working at NCH has begun to give me an understanding of some of the issues (in a very broad sense) and given me an interest in pursuing the end of homelessness from within the church.
Things currently on my mind include: whiteness, cultural appropriation, what I want to do with my life, how I’ll pay for AMBS and the appropriate level of information to respond with to queries about Mennoniteness.
If you got this far, thanks. If you didn’t I can’t say I blame you. I look forward to many fruitful dialogues here.