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becky garrison

Just saw at the Tribeca film festival the football documentary "The Power of the Game," a totally engrossing history of football as seen through the eyes of a players in Iran, Argentina, US, England, Germany, South Africa and Senegal- why this sport has never caught on in the US is beyond me. (http://www.tribecafilmfestival.org/tixSYS/2007/filmguide/eventnote.php?EventNumber=4551) It's listed as a UK film so assume you'll get a chance to see it - highly recommend it.

Kathy

Hi Jonny, glad you're having such a rich experience in the former Yugoslavia! Wish I could have come as a translator, or just as a fly on the wall. Your descriptions remind me all too much of the struggles the churches in Bosnia face in being culturally relevant -- with pre-modern, modern, and post-modern elements all present in the same society. Add to that the issues of foreign missionaries, issues of money and power, and the potential for manipulation ... well, classic missions case studies! Great to read your thoughts, look forward to hearing more when you get back.

Peace

chrissie

hi jonny, so glad you are having a positive and encouraging time in croatia, your thoughts are encouragin and inspiring, however i am, in the context of bless, in a really positive working relationship with a small croatian church, where its working fab having óutsiders in to serve with the church, we do allsorts of fun and encourgagin things for the city together with the church, and don't think in any way we patronise or set ourselves up as experts.
not saying that you said all óutsider help'is like that, just comes across a little strong and negative, cause there are good, cooperation models everywhere too, where it is just simply the church working together, especially within the european network.
living on the mainland now of europe, i consider myself european and not an outsider in other european cultures, and our work in bless seeks to encourage working together and serving each other.

jonny

kathy, chrissie hi! thanks for your comments.

shame you couldn't be here kathy - maybe another time?

chrissie i wasn't intending to be negative about all outsiders just honest about the struggles... glad to hear you are in a positive relationship with bless. and great to draw you into making a comment - must try and connect with you guys some time. aaron sent me a comment via myspce - was great to connect with him

brandon

Really appreciate your thoughts here, Jonny. I'm thinking that your humble, unassuming posture went a long way to bless this Croatian group.

I've struggled with some of the same issues as a Yankee working in Ireland under a North American based organization. Along with immersing ourselves in cultural/historical learning, my wife and I have committed to not starting anything new ourselves. Many expat mission workers here (including our organization) have taken on a 'church planting facilitation' role where we come alongside and serve under and resource church planting efforts. The last thing that Dublin needs is more modern American-style churches.

Having said all of that, I'm still pretty clueless as to what that looks like. Trying to learn as I go, which means I'm making a helluva lot of mistakes. I'm even hesitant to take young Irish leaders to things like Soliton and Blah events because the British context is soooo different from Ireland, but I really feel like there are ways that you and others in the UK like Ian Mobsby can really come alongside them with sensitivity to their unique context.

Thanks again for sharing from your heart and experience in Croatia.

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