loren Eric Swanson: Andy Bales--Attempting the Heroic

Friday, June 15, 2007

Andy Bales--Attempting the Heroic

Does it get any better than having dinner with Andy Bales at Phillipe's--the home of (where it was invented) the French Dip sandwich (recommended by Rachael Ray!), a few blocks where Andy is the Executive Director of Union Rescue Mission (http://www.urm.org/)-- the largest such mission in the world. Andy was community outreach pastor at Lake Avenue Church in Pasadena, where he was part of the first Leadership Community for Externally Focused Churches before taking his current dream job. He is at the tail end of a battle to relocate 240 single moms and kids out of the inner city and into housing at Hope Gardens in the country NE of Los Angeles. It's a great story (http://www.npr.org/templates/story/story.php?storyId=5360851). Andy has been in the headlines of the LA Times (Local Section), on Anderson Cooper (http://www.cbsnews.com/stories/2007/05/17/60minutes/main2823079.shtml) (http://transcripts.cnn.com/TRANSCRIPTS/0612/23/cnr.05.html), just appeared before a state senate committee on hospital dumping (where homeless are not admitted into hospitals, but rather dumped by hospitals in front of the shelter) http://video.aol.com/video-search/Andy-Bales-SiCKO-What-Has-Happened-to-Health-Care/id/2864518878 (You have to watch this one--unbelievable) and this week will fly to DC to appear before another senate committee. Andy told me that when he read Isaiah 65 to the state senate committe regarding the type of community he envisioned, people cheered. Andy is also featured in a new film by Michael Moore on homelessness and will be released this summer. Got to catch a plane but get on URM Website and get on Andy's blog. It's quite a ride!


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