19 Nov 2018
Acts of Kindness
Sharing the love through community churches in greater MilwaukeeTopics:
Michael Robertson (AMP 82, 1979) is the interim minister at Plymouth Congregational Church in Racine, Wisconsin. In this interview, he shares his thoughts on service to his community and the importance of advocating for kindness in our human interactions.
“In 1989, I decided that I was going to do what God called me to do. Now, that's sort of a strange thing, and nothing happened for two years, until I discovered that the National Association of Congregational Christian Churches was looking for an executive secretary. I applied for the job and was hired. And then I spent the next six years with 400 churches around the country, visiting them.
“At the end, when my term was over, I searched around for what came next. I couldn't figure out why urban and suburban churches weren't working together. I looked at five different communities that I had connections with, and ultimately ended up setting up a thing called Community Faith Alliance, combining North Shore Congregational Church, which was a significant church in Fox Point, with Community Baptist Church at the corner of Sherman and North in the middle of Milwaukee, in what you'd call a very depressed area.
“Service is what it's all about. The professors we had here really forced us to think about what was important. I have a program called the Love Kindness Program, in which love is a verb. We need to elevate kindness as being essential. My wife Emily and I have a Love Kindness Award at Piedmont College. We just instituted one at the University of Wisconsin, Milwaukee. We have one at the High Mount School, which is an elementary school. And I'm hoping that this is something that can expand.
“That, to me, might make a real difference in the world. If we would understand that kindness by itself––that we actually put kindness up as being the most important thing that we need to do, as the bedrock of everything else we do, then it seems to me we will have made a huge impact, not only in how we do our business, but how we interact with each other.”
(Published November 2018)
Class of AMP 82