As the commuters busy themselves to make the next leg of their journey into work I wonder if The Salvation Army is more emerging than we thinkThey were not there when I came back.
I saw them from the top of the 185 bus as I made my way to Victoria to do a stint of collecting for the SA Annual Appeal - ironically sleeping under the bridges - as I went to 'do something'. As the bus slowly passed overhead I looked at the time 6:30am, the group seemed to be slowly waking up, some of the group folding away sleeping bags, others folding up their cardboard, their only insulation.
Five minutes later I am signing in at Victoria, collecting box poised - I'm hopeful that I might have a better place to stand than last week when at another station I stood in front of a poster boldly promoting its message "DO NOT ENCOURAGE BEGGARS BY GIVING THEM MONEY". For the next three hours with the image of Vauxhall Bridge in my mind I 'encourage' people to contribute and I am happy to 'beg' in their places.
At a recent Tom Sine seminar on the emerging church, he pointed out that the real losers in this recession will not be the banks or stock markets but will be those individuals on the margins. With less people in a place to give Sine suggested that the emerging church needs to identify with those to 'have not' in a way that will help them through. As the army of commuters busy themselves to make the next leg of their journey into work I wonder if The Salvation Army is more emerging than we think :o)!!
My stint over, I settle down on the bus to read. At Vauxhall Bridge I look up and out for the small community... they've gone!