Early on in his ministry, Ray Bakke realized that if he was to be a true urban pastor he would have to live among those he ministered to. As a result he and his family have lived for many decades in rented apartments in inner city Chicago.
John Hayes, who lives among the poor in London, says, “Presence ministry breaks down barriers. It ministers face-to-face. It knows people by name…. Heaven is strictly a first-name-basis kind of place.”
The need for presence ministry seems to have so often escaped our missions endeavors—both past and present—as we live in safe “missionary compounds” or suburbs removed from those we serve.
Who are we serving and how can we best live among them?