I started this blog to report on my travels, and despite my poor discipline in updating it I do feel the urge every time I hit the road.
I got back early this morning from a week in Congo, so my juices are flowing.
The trip got off to a sad start, though, and that’s what’s on my mind now.
When we arrived in Kinshasa on Monday evening I called home and got the news that our friend and partner Glen Barton had died.
I’ll share some of our Congo experiences over the next few days (one of our group, Craig Martindale, rightly noted that there was no way a script could have been written for what unfolded there!).
Today, though, my thoughts are on Glen.
I first met him in late 2005. Mack McCarter of Community Renewal had met with Millard and me to see if we could get some houses built for the Katrina refugees who had flooded Shreveport after the storm. We all agreed that it would be a good thing to do, but we didn’t have a covenant partner there and knew we’d have to take the lead in the work.
About this same time Millard and Glen had been in touch and Glen indicated a willingness to get involved. Millard asked him to drive over to Shreveport to meet with me (a short 5 hour trip, he said—turns out its more like 14).
We met at a little coffee house on the King’s Highway and got to know one another. It turned out that we had a fair amount in common. We had both worked for Habitat and both awoke one day to find that our positions had disappeared in a restructuring. We were the same age—a pair of old guys not ready for retirement and looking for a new life assignment, and we were both committed to Millard Fuller’s vision of a world without poverty housing.