Here’s Johnny

In a message given to Christians living in Antioch during the 4th century at a time of great social and political crisis, John Chrysostom reminds them:

“If you are a Christian, no earthly city is yours. Of our city, ‘The Builder and Maker is God.’ Though we may gain possession of the whole world, we are still but immigrants and foreigners in it all. We are enrolled in heaven: Our citizenship is there! Let us not, after the manner of little children, despise things that are great and admire those which are little! Not our city’s greatness, but virtue of soul is our ornament and defense.”1

Beloved, read this once again. Ask, for what city do I truly live? What do my words and actions reveal, even during this time of crisis? How does my treatment of the vulnerable or hurting serve as a signpost to the city whose Builder and Maker is God?

1. Homily “On Statues,” 17.12. For details surrounding the crisis see Douglas B. Radke, paper, “John Chrysostom, On the statues : a study in crisis rhetoric” (1988).

About Fred

Fred came to serve greater Williamsburg and WCC as lead pastor in October of 2010 and is grateful to be a part of the family. He is a husband, father, certified trauma professional, S.T.A.R. (strategies for trauma awareness & resilience) practitioner, community organizer, TEDx alum, founder of 3e Restoration, Inc. and co-owner of Philoxenia Culture LLC. He received his B.S. in Ministry/Bible at Amridge University and his Master’s of Religious Education in Missional Leadership from Rochester University. Currently he is a candidate for a Doctorate of Ministry in Contextual Theology in at Northern Seminary in Chicago. Fred has also served as an adjunct professor for Rochester University and Regent University where taught courses in philosophy, ethics, leadership, pastoral care, intro to Christianity, and ethnography. He has also served as a guest lecturer on the subjects of racialized cultural systems, poverty, and missiology at various universities, such as William & Mary and Oklahoma Christian University. Fred has authored on book (Racialized Cultural Systems, Social Displacement and Christian Hospitality) and several curriculum offerings, including The FloorPlan: Living Toward Restoration & Resilience. Fred enjoys hanging out with his family anytime, anywhere. He is deeply grateful for how God graciously works through the Church in all her various forms, despite our brokenness. He is passionate about seeing the last, least, and lonely of every neighborhood, city and nation experience God’s in-breaking kingdom, and come to know Jesus as King. Oh, and his favorite season is Advent and Christmas. Fred is a founding member of the board of directors for Virginia Racial Healing Institute, a member of the leadership team for Williamsburg's local chapter of Coming to the Table, and a member of Greater Williamsburg Trauma-Informed Community Network's Racial Trauma Committee and Training Committee.
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