I’ve been at the Dale for almost 10 months now. It seems like time is flying, but when I look back at where I started, a lot has happened since then. I have found that throughout these months I’ve been like a sponge soaking up everything around me.
I have been taking in the neighbourhood of Parkdale, learning about its history, all of the businesses here (and those that used to be here), and the dynamic of its streets. Everytime we go on a walk, I try to take it all in. Exploring the neighbourhood and visiting people has helped me get to know the street names and feel out the vibe of each corner and pocket. I’ve learned that Coffee Time was the place to sit and chat, before it got transformed into a Popeyes; that the “Milky Way” is a great alley to take a short cut; that one of the parkettes is a beautiful spot to sit and have a chat; and that church steps are always available for hanging out with friends.
I have also been soaking up the experience and wisdom of my lovely co-workers. The way they understand ministry, their outlook on global injustice, and how they love others. Often I feel like I’m taking it all in, figuring out what it means to be a part of a church without walls, and am amazed at the decisions they make based on their many years of experience.
I have been getting to know the community, so many names and faces were intimidating to me at first. When I first joined The Dale, on my bus ride home at the end of the day, I would go over names in my head trying to memorize them. Now I feel like I have gotten to meet and know so many faces, and I feel blessed getting to call several people my friends. I’ve also been learning so much from those friends as I get to hear all sorts of stories. From endless lessons on music, to tips on the best shops in the neighbourhood, and very often I receive life advice from friends looking out for me since I am a young adult.
It’s been such a growing experience to be a part of The Dale, and I feel blessed for the opportunity. Each part and each day is a gift from God. Although the majority of my time with The Dale has been during a dramatic change because of Covid, there is still so much to take in. I am a slow learner, but I am constantly trying to see the world with new eyes as I approach what it means to be a part of this community, soaking it all up like a sponge.
I am still pretty far from my fundraising goal! If you would like to financially partner with me in this ministry, you can donate with the button below and specify in the comment box that you would like to support me. Feel free to reach out if you would like more information or would just like to chat.