Ken, a native New Yorker hailing from Brooklyn, brings in the food. Lots of food. Literally, tons of food that is used for two community meals and distributions for our church body offered every week, a well-stocked pantry to help an underpaid church staff cut household expenses, and regular weekly distributions for our community. New Vision is able to feed thousands of people every week and we are able to make connections with people who will often show up as much as two hours early to line up for food.
Ken's story is one of my favorites to tell. Maybe it is because he has become so dear to my family (not to mention keeping us fed). Really, it is because his story reflects who we are and the "new vision" we believe that God wants to give each of us.
Ken is a prodigal son... a prodigal that used to deal drugs. But even before his life took a turn at the San Diego Rescue Mission, God was planting His "new vision" for Ken's life. Many times when Ken would enter a home to deal he would often notice that there wasn't a lot of food in the house for the children. He started to poke into people's cupboards and fridges to see if there was food for the kids. Ken even started to tell people that he would stop dealing to them if they didn't make sure there was food for the children. As backwards as that all sounds, it was the seed of a ministry that God was waiting to birth in Ken.
Ken came to New Vision to help with our landscaping. After bringing a dead lawn back to life, he became curious about our food ministry which, at the time, amounted to day-old bread. As he got involved, doors started to open and more food became available. And since that time, Ken's hunger to see people fed can not be satiated.
New Vision is now feeding over 3000 people each week because of God's vision for Ken's life. Because of his ministry, we will be able to feed 1000 households in one day at our spring outreach festival this year. A man who would, in most churches, be relegated to menial service and watched with an over-cautious eye is free, but accountable, to pursue what God calls him to do.
This is exactly what New Vision is about.