Uncomfortably, you pass them by on downtown streets. They are the reason you choose the suburban mall over the one in the city. When you do make the choice to venture into the heart of the urban experience you keep your head down and your eyes averted. You silently pray that your own kids won’t express their anger, hope, disappointment, joy, or divine longing so … creatively.
These others are at once the inspiration for next year’s suburban fashion trends and relegated to the margins of the church. We don’t understand them, they don’t seem to want what we chase after, yet they embody our internal “dis-ease.” Who invites them to immerse themselves into the kingdom of God, the Jesus-led life? For those who call themselves a part of The Bridge Church, it is Angie Fadel, a student at George Fox Evangelical Seminary.
Angie is the pastor of The Bridge in Portland and continues to call the poor, artistic, disillusioned and ignored into community. She is mindful that these qualities have little to do with financial resources but recognizes that they are common to all of our lives. Angie provides a home for the marginalized, a place for each person to participate, a place for them to
As a student, Angie is known by her professors and peers as a thoughtful and compassionate leader. She is mentored and challenged, cared for and encouraged. To be known at George Fox Evangelical Seminary is only the beginning of a student’s journey. As our students minister in their churches, ministries, nonprofits and businesses they seek to know others in the same way they are known at GFES. More importantly, they incarnate the kind of ministry reflected in the life of Jesus, who acknowledged the value of the ignored and forgotten.
“The Bridge Church isn’t a consumer-driven experience; it is a community in which you play your part. By coming, it means you belong” (thebridgeportland.org). Angie discovered quickly that by being a part of the seminary, she found a place to belong. As this is carried into the life of her church, she is sharing with the city what it means to be known. Angie helps us to imagine a world where every person influenced by our students and alumni are not just known by another person, but awaken to the reality that God knows them and they have a place to belong.
Please remember to pray for our students, who, like Angie, juggle the multiple demands of family, ministry and education.