Monday, June 16, 2008

Compassion at Moraine Park Summer Fest

This was the day I was waiting for. I was getting to do another event for Compassion, and I was going to be working with the lady who put me through my Advocate training, Lisa. I was psyched.
I arrived around 1:00 and Lisa immediately recognized me - how many other Compassion Advocates have mohawks (I don't know if there are any others)? We hugged and started to talk right away. It was great to meet her in person, and we had so many stories to share while we were there.
I have to say, the festival wasn't quite what it could've been. The weather, which is beyond the control of the festival coordinators, was lousy. It rained off-n-on for the most part of the afternoon. And not just rain, but really hard rain. So, there weren't many people out-n-about to walk past our tent. And our location among the vendors meant that even when people were walking around, it was more like browsing and nobody really wanted to approach the table to see what we were "selling".
We also saw our fair share of skeptics and people who wanted to "make a point" to us by asking scripted questions (follow up questions while you're still answering their first question) and then asking if we didn't see a need here in the U.S.. And I always want to ask these people why they feel some need to "condemn" what we're doing as if whatever charities they support (if they support any at all) are more noble in their efforts than what we're doing. As if God doesn't want all of us to follow our own heart to support whatever ministries He has called us to care about.

And this is the reason why so many churches and Christians are ineffective in their faith. We have no sense of unity. We let our differences get in our way. We refuse to acknowledge that everybody is different, with different gifts and talents to be used for different ministries and callings. And until we're willing to allow different people to follow different callings, we will not be effective.

In any event, we didn't get many sponsorships while I was at the booth. We did get some serious inquiries, beyond the skeptics. I did learn even more about Compassion while talking to Lisa. I encouraged a sponsor who was helping at the table to become an Advocate like myself. And some of the people involved with organizing this festival have expressed their desire to be in partnership with Compassion, in spite of the set-backs that happened. So we'll see what happens next year.
Something really cool that happened though was the guys from Alakrity showed up. So I got to talk and hang out with them again, for a little while. They were supposed to play a 20 minute set, but the weather threw a monkey wrench to everything. They didn't get to play, and after driving 2 hours to get to the festival, they didn't get paid either. I felt really bad for them, but at least they got to stay to see Manic Drive and Pillar.

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2 Comments:

Blogger One Wink at a Time said...

So sorry the weather didn't cooperate. I give you credit, though, for hanging in there and sticking it out.
There will always be skeptics and people who are anti-whatever. It makes your job harder but makes you stronger and more determined, I'm sure. I'm quite bothered by the fact that so many have such a hard time opening their minds and hearts.

9:59 AM  
Blogger M+ said...

Thank you. I am encouraged by those who did seriously inquire. And I know that I will have better opportunities soon enough.

10:47 PM  

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