Archives For urban

You can listen to Noah Filipiak’s “Behind the Curtain” Podcast interview with Tyler St. Clair on the Podbean Player below or you can subscribe to all “Behind the Curtain” Ministry Podcast episodes on iTunes. (Podcast listening tip: use the podcasts app on your smartphone and listen while driving, doing chores, or working out)


Two years ago, Pastor Tyler St. Clair was interviewed in Episode 17 of the Behind the Curtain Ministry Podcast, discussing what it was like to gear up for his urban church plant in Detroit and what it was like to do fundraising as a black pastor.  Today, Noah Filipiak catches back up with Pastor Tyler to see what actually planting and pastoring has been like after all the hype has died down.  The two church planters talk about life in the trenches of pastoral / church planting ministry and about how important it is to keep realistic and biblical expectations as a pastor.  Tyler also discusses the Contend Conference, coming up in Detroit on February 28th.

Tyler on Twitter

Tyler on Facebook

Tyler on Instagram

Tyler’s Blog

Noah Filipiak interviews 18-year-old Dennis Hammond on being raised in inner city Lansing, how he found Christ, his June 19-26th trip to Honduras and how the odds are stacked against inner city black youth.  The catalyst of this interview came from Noah helping Dennis fund-raise for his $1600 missions trip and realizing how different it is for an inner city black teen to try paying for a missions trip in comparison to a white suburban teen.  The unfolding conversation between Noah and Dennis highlights fatherlessness, crime and gang activity that riddles inner city youth and the need for the Church to redistribute its network, mentoring and resources to help these teens chart a new path.  Dennis shares about how God saved him from a life of drugs, gangs, crime and despair to a new life as a young leader in his church and an evangelist for God’s Kingdom wherever he goes.  If you can give money to help Dennis go to Honduras this June, please visit Dennis’s GoFundMe account:  https://www.gofundme.com/75v7g5v8

You can listen to the interview with Dennis below via the Podbean Player or you can subscribe to all “Behind the Curtain” Ministry Podcast episodes on iTunes

Can you help provide some NLT Bibles to our urban youth?Screen Shot 2015-08-09 at 3.12.26 PM

God is using our awesome youth pastor, David Singleton, to lead inner-city youth in Lansing to faith in Jesus Christ in our church, the inner-city parks, as well as the juvenile detection facility where David preaches regularly.  We have given away almost all of entire stock of Bibles to teens who have began relationships with Christ and our youth budget does not have room for this expense.

Could you step in and purchase some NLT Bibles for us to use for our teens and to continue to give away to teens who begin relationships with Christ?

Any quantity is greatly appreciated, as we don’t plan on slowing down anytime soon!  We are looking for New Living Translations and our preference would be the following Holy Bible: New Living Translation.  You can ship them to Crossroads Church, 105 W. Allegan St., Lansing MI 48933.  Thank you so much!

Get to know youth pastor David Singleton in a podcast interview I did with him on urban ministry and race.

I’m 32 years old and I grew up white.

suburbia-lawn-mower-white-raceI was raised in a suburban town of Dayton, OH where nearly everyone was white.  The Dayton area follows the pattern of most metropolitan cities in America: urban core made up predominantly of people of color, particularly African-Americans, where the most recorded crime and the worst schools exist.  You then move a circle out to find the “white flight” suburbs, “safe” towns and communities created by white people who wanted to get away from black people and the “danger” they brought.

My graduating class of ~350 people had 5 or 6 black kids in it.

My church of ~350 people had 0 black people in it.

I was never taught by a black teacher in school and was never preached to by a black preacher in church.

The Christian college I attended in Grand Rapids, MI was also predominantly white, the very small smattering of black students heavily outweighed by the (estimating) 98% white on-campus student population.  I never had a black professor.

The seminary attended in Grand Rapids had a slight uptick in black students, still vastly dominated by white students though, and I still only sat under white professors and white senior leadership.

I never noticed or cared. Continue Reading…