PET MO-Columbia update 2-22-16
PETs built since 1-1-16 #204
Yesterday morning I drove out north of town about 10 miles to worship with
the good folks at the Red Top Christian Church. The color of the roof gave
the church its name. Red Top for me has always been a grass hay especially
good for horses. There it was a congregation of some 85 or so people of
Disciple of Christ leanings, including 11 lively children for the
children’s time. At the appropriate time, I took about 1 minute to thank
that church for it contributions to PET. A half dozen of our best
volunteers come from that congregation. In their summer VBS they raise a
good many dollars for PET. In talking with them it was obvious that they
all knew about and highly respected PET.
That church represents the many congregations across the mid-West and USA
who have adopted PET as a mission project. I think these are some of the
(1) PET enables a congregation to carry out some of its biblical mandate
to follow Jesus. When I speak at churches I often retell the story of the
two Disciples of Jesus who saw the man crawling in the street at the
Temple. “Lame from birth,” the Bible says. So were many of the recipients
of PET, or lame soon after when they got polio. In the spirit of Jesus,
the Disciples asked the man to arise and walk. We do the same with PET.
Churches like a mission project that clearly represents their faith base.
(2) PET expands the congregation’s understanding of the world we are
called to serve, and the unique needs of its people. PET literature and
thank-you letters carry photos and stories of exotic lands and people with
tragic needs that came from circumstances we find difficult to imagine.
Our horizons are expanded.
(3) A PET gives an immediate answer to a long endured problem. Some have
been crawling on the ground 40 or more years. Give them a PET and
immediately they arise to a new life of mobility, hope, pride, dignity,
comfort and productivity. Few social problems are so quickly solved. (See
attached story of Ernesto in Guatemala who crawled for 37 years and then
received a PET and turned it into a Snack Cart.)
A congregation that is a “PET Church” has made a good step in fulfilling
its biblical mandate to care for “the least of these.” I feel good
worshiping with them in their pews.
“We can easily forgive a child who is afraid of the dark. The real tragedy
of life is when men are afraid of the light,” – Plato
Mel West, Director Emeritus