I was at a gang conference in Orlando and went to a talk by a pastor from Boston who joined with other churches reaching out to the youth in high crime areas. They went out on Friday evenings and walked around the neighbourhood. He said it took approximately 6 weeks before anybody asked what they were doing. After that they were able to gain the trust of the youth and start the conversation with them and start addressing their needs. A week later some the God Squad team were at the One Rock concert and Bishop Henry was saying mass, the wind was howling and the rain was threatening. It was very hard to hear Bishop Henry as he was saying his homily because of the wind and approaching storm. I was given a realization later as I reflected on how hard it is for our young men to hear the voice of their shepherd with all the distractions and storms blowing around in their world. If I, a committed Catholic father and husband, was struggling to hear Bishop Henry who is one of the loudest and clearest voices we have in Canada today, how much harder is it for these young men, who are easily distracted? It only confirmed my resolution to fight fire with fire and where there’s fire there’s smoke. If you watch the many Food Network shows such as Barbecue Pit Masters or Best in Smoke, you might notice that food has an interesting way of getting men’s attention. Women have known this since the beginning of time.
At our last God squad meeting it was passed that we set up a barbecue trailer to begin our barbecue outreach ministry and evangelize our men, especially young men. We believe that this approach will have much faster results than the pastor from Boston who took six weeks before anybody would talk to him. My experience with the barbecue is that it will take about 6 min. before some guy starts talking to you about what you’re cooking and how you’re cooking it. It gives God Squad an opportunity to promote what a godly man is, how important a family meal is, and be that role model for these men as shown in studies. (Please check this study)
So if you are able to support this endeavour by being available to assist at different functions, say a novena to St. Joseph, make a donation, or find a sponsor who might be willing to advertise on the side of the trailer, please do so.
P.S. If you have a good deal on a cargo trailer please let us know.