Curtisamongfriends: A Story of Transfiguration
The Rhythms of Life


We are confused...

The French Lady has just walked away in a huff after thinking we have been stealing her bandwidth. We don't know what she's talking about but she keeps saying "something...something...wee-fee". After a few minutes I eventually cotton on that she is saying 'Don't use the wi-fi'. I manage to catch up with her so as to clear up exactly what we stand accused of. She says 'please don't use the wee-fee'. I respond smiling saying 'Oh I see but we weren't using it' (which is the truth). She doesn't believe me. Eventually I put on my most honest face and tone of voice (you know the one) and repeating a few times that we really aren't using the 'wee-fee', she eventually relents. We part ways. All is well. Thus starts the Thursday Morning 'Community Exploration' at the Alliance Francaise Cafe just bordering the neighborhood we are hoping to move to. It was pretty humorous and I have a feeling that the 'wee-fee' French lady is going to become a good friend of ours :)

'Community Exploration' has become a treasured time in our weekly staff rhythm (save for the cross cultural misunderstandings). This is a time when we visit the neighborhood we hope to move to and listen to it, learn about it and seek to appreciate its unique and defining characteristics. We are engaged in a work of listening 
and presence. The value of listening and presence is often seen in counselling and coaching. The healing power of simple but genuine listening and presence always astounds me. Listening and presence are crucial to NieuCommunities philosophy and practice, not only in times of change but in everything we do. Right now we are seeking to be present by visiting parks, churches, cafes and friends (both current and future) to get a feel for people we hope to live,work and share life amongst.

This particular 'wee-fee' day we met with a Theology Masters student who lives in the area who gave us some great insight and confirmed some hunches about the rhythms and makeup of the community. This afternoon we will be meeting with a friend from Sunnyside who will help us understand the rhythms and make up of a neighbouring but very different community.

The observant among you will notice that sadly we have not moved there yet. Unfortunately no house has come available that is either suitable for us or within our price range. However we have decided to be patient as this area really feels right to shape and form transformissional leaders of tomorrow. That is leaders who are convinced of the redeeming and restoring work of God within our fragile but beautiful world. The 'melting pot' feel of classes, cultures and races (and all its accompanying tensions,fears and possibilities) combined with the close proximity to the University sits right with our DNA. While we wait for housing in the area we continue to strengthen relationships with current partners and discern and form new ones.

I hope and pray that life is well for you and your families and that the second half of 2010 (Vuvuzela!) will be filled with joy and peace. It is always so good to hear from you and what you are up to, so please drop me a line.

Much love

Curtis 

P.S Photo header is courtesy of a gifted phot-hog Chris Kamalski

 

 
 

Paul Tillich on Listening 

'The first duty of love is to listen' 









A picture I took of the collages that the Pure Hope apprentices made during our 10 week exploration of The Story we Find Ourselves in. For more check out this blog post I wrote about it here.


 






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"Better World Village" with TLF


To get a taste of TLF (Tshwane Leadership Foundation), one of our  evolving partners and friends who are doing incredible work in the City, check out their "Better World Village" event. It is running parallel to the World Cup and I will be volunteering as part of their counselling and care team during the event.







NCSA Team for 2010

(From R to L: Chris, Kaziah, Natalie, Curtis, Ezra, Joe and Malachi)

These are my friends and team mates. Now and into the coming months we will be forming, growing and recruiting our way towards the kind of team that can shape and form the kind of leaders we hope to see.





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