how NOT to help the poor

just saw this clip from a true american hero in the heart of the urban america, rudy carrasco.  i’ve had about a dozen conversaitons in the past week about this very subject.  this clip is from some good folks at the acton institute in that state up north and their excellent  “Effective Stewardship” curriculum. which says it very well.  (btw, the namesake of acton, lord hb action was the author of a great reminder for today… “absolute power corrupts absolutely.”)

and it rings so true.  rudy says…there are reasons about poverty that are counter-intuitive…things you don’t think about…there are times when poverty is the result of a stupid decision at a buearucratic level… it reminds me of a similar argument that marvin olasky made a few years ago in his book the tragedy of american compassion. in the midst of this messy financial upheaval many things are becoming clear.  we need to allow the natural pace of the free market.  there is a hand that rewards when you work it right and a foot that gives you the boot when you miss the mark.  what we are in the middle of is unprecedented, but has as many dangers and penalties as it does rewards and progress.

i love rudy’s heart and passion.  he’s leading and doing what real compassion is all about….surf over to harambee and see for yourself.  if you’re looking for a place to do some hands on ministry…this would be a great place.

here’s a couple of pixs from a recent visit.  the first is rudy hard at work in his office at harambee.

the recyle bins pictured were the good work of our students last summer when we were in socal and spent a couple of days at harambee in pasadena.  though it was a small effort, the students still talk about their investment.  i was blessed to see them still there and very much a part of the neighborhood.

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