November 24, 2017

Support Scuba Missions!

I’m helping a group of young people from our local Methodist church on a mission trip in Providence, Rhode Island this week. We are working with Providence Rescue Mission through Praying Pelican Missions.

We have all we need, but I thought I’d introduce you to a couple that is asking for support for their “mission” work right now.

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Video by John Crist. See more at John Crist Comedy.

Comments

  1. Note to Chaplain: Rhode Island is not really an island. Don’t delude yourself.

    • Actually, Ted, it is. The official name of the state is Rhode Island and Providence Plantations, the Rhode Island part being the island which contains Newport, Middletown, and Porstsmouth and is called Aquidneck Island in modern times (although I heard a rumor several years ago that the official US cartography agency – which name I forget – changed the name back to Rhode Island in the interests of historical accuracy). And the southern end of that island, Newport, is very much a Summer vacation resort dedicated to water sports like sailing and diving. So CM isn’t far off after all.

      A note to Chaplain Mike – I used to live in Newport. If you get the chance during your visit to Providence, do yourself a favor and drop down to Newport. But not for the mansions or the beaches; I recommend Ballard Park, a 13 acre nature preserve with some great trails and overlooks, and the adjacent Gooseneck Cove salt water inlet/salt marsh complex on Hazard Rd. and Ocean Drive. The place is absolute magic!

      • But…but…the bridges? Where I come from a bridge cancels out any claim to islandhood. It’s like it USED to be an island. People on Mount Desert Island call that “the Island” but to me that’s the mainland. And I’m told the bridge today was a bottleneck with holiday traffic.

        But thanks for the historical correction. And have a great Fourth.

  2. Adam Tauno Williams says:

    It is good that video is clearly marked as Comedy/Satire – as it isn’t that far off from a lot of “mission” pitches. 🙁

    I have been asked to “support” a missionary who is doing … office work in an American city.
    I have been asked to support “mission” trips to Bermuda.
    The letters are always so heavy with Jesus Juking and “Calling” BS that it is amazing they can be contained by a mere paper envelope.

    It makes it hard to distinguish between those doing real work and subsidized tax-exempt vacations for bored suburbans.

  3. Heather Angus says:

    Really funny — but I wasn’t sure at first if it was satire. I guess her reference to “made by a real orphan” kind of clinched it. (And yes, CM, it helped to label it Laugh or Else. I need all the guidance I can get.)

    • Adam Tauno Williams says:

      > but I wasn’t sure at first if it was satire

      Ditto

      > guess her reference to “made by a real orphan” kind of clinched it.

      That clinched it? It sounded 110% believable to me; I can see a “missionary” saying that; pretty sure I’ve heard pretty much that statement.

    • Headless Unicorn Guy says:

      In an Age of Extremes like today, it becomes impossible to do satire.

      Because as over-the-top and crazy as you can get for satirical humor, there are True Believers out there twice as over-the-top, twice as crazy, and Dead Serious.

  4. Rick Ro. says:

    “…I was looking at these key chains made by real orphans…”

    Brilliant. Love those videos.

  5. Christiane says:

    ‘mission trips’ aren’t what they used to be, I guess 🙂

    • Adam Tauno Williams says:

      Finding that remote unreached tribe in the 21st century is a tough assignment.

  6. Stephen says:

    CM, you might want to reconsider Providence. That’s the home of H P Lovecraft! No telling what you might stumble onto (or into) up there.

    • Adam Tauno Williams says:

      If you happen upon an Elder God I suggest you just show them Twitter; that might be enough to decide destroying the world and/or human kind isn’t worth the trouble – it’s pretty hellish already.

      • Stephen says:

        Twitter does seem to be the nadir of western civilization doesn’t it? Followed closely by YouTube comments.

        • And facebook. One of my wife’s FB friends just said that someone accused her of not loving God and country, and should be lined up against a wall and shot.

          Granted, our friend writes for a leftist paper in DC, but still…

          • Adam Tauno Williams says:

            > , our friend writes for a leftist paper in DC

            Well, then that is to be expected. 🙁

            But Facebook is a salvageable platform – it has pretty sophisticated controls – if people choose to use them. You can create groups of “friends”, designate what the groups can see, set which group posts go into by default, etc…

            I created a group called “Comrades”, and I only allow those people to follow activity beyond posts. I put people I know aren’t crazy in that group, and I set it as the default group for posts. Then I can specifically make certain posts Public.

            Then Facebook becomes a pretty civil place.

  7. I don’t see a great deal of difference between this mildly amusing satire and the apparently real endeavor of moving a group of unspecified size of young people from Indiana to Rhode Island and back to accomplish things which I would presume also need doing back home in Indiana. I know that I couldn’t afford to go to Rhode Island and back, even sleeping in my car, and if I determined to do so anyway, it seems to me it would make more sense to take the money and send it to the Providence Rescue Mission. I’m not saying that if I got instructions from God to go to Rhode Island that I would not do so, but I seriously question whether all these young people got specific instructions from God, nor does it seem likely to me that the Methodist Church were instructed by God to send their young people to Providence for a holiday weekend. Well it’s no skin off my nose and no one asked me for money to finance this, but it does not help my already dim view of the past history and present workings of the Christian church under the name of mission.

    When I was in high school my class went on a trip to Washington DC. This was intended to be educational and I suppose to some extent it was. I carry good memories of it and in a way it was like a reward, even if we had to finance it ourselves. If this Rhode Island trip was intended to be educational and presented as such, I would be much less cynical about it. To call an extended weekend holiday jaunt a mission seems like a slap in the face to Damaris and many others who gave up a serious chunk of their life in a sincere attempt to make a real difference in other people’s lives.

    • Charles, I have heard the same argument from someone who had just got back from a Caribbean cruise.

      Call it a vacation then; it’s that time of year for school kids. In this case though, the kids are working hard and learning skills, and how to work together. And there’s an interchange with churches and people from another part of the country.

      And Rhode Island is not all that far from Indiana. It was a bus, not a 747.

      Call it a class trip. This is indeed educational for the kids, as you said about your trip, and will provide them memories the rest of their lives too.

      I shouldn’t speak for Damaris, but I think she can handle it.

      • Damaris Zehner says:

        With Ted, I’m fine with calling it something other than being a missionary. Travel and sharing are good, but people who take a bus trip to a US city should know that they’re skiing the bunny slopes,as it were, and that others are on the double black diamonds — just as my in-laws should acknowledge (not that they do) that going Epcot Center is not the same as a trip to Europe.