right now halifax is covered in a white blanket of snow. the snow stopped falling at a little past 1am. probably 1:07am (time i was born at). my window on the top floor (third story) sees a lot of the city. i can look out and see the bridge leading over the water to dartmouth, the city on the other side, and a lot of houses and large apartment buildings in my neighborhood. everything i see is white. this dark place could use some brightening up.
the neighborhood i live in is rough. its been cleaned up a bit recently with real estate developers doing their part to reallocate certain people groups. still, this neighborhood needs some major help. racial tension and socio-economic prejudices permeates much of the area, stemming from prior injustices done to the black communities and failures to repair relations. gang life is a common reality, as kids give up their childhoods to play gangsters on the streets. swarmings (random mob violence) and shootings are an unfortunate reality that some families must deal with. throw a giant drug problem on to the fire and you have a recipe for a community’s destruction.
with so many obstacles in the way of reconciliation, its no wonder most people here looked so defeated. but as many obstacles as there may be, theres still plenty enough people working hard to reverse course and recreate a strong and healthy community. the churches in the neighborhood are quite active, opening their doors to the community to use their facilities, kitchens and beds. other churches are stepping up and filling the other needs of the neighborhood (eg. esl for immigrants, youth centers, after school programs for kids, etc). im happy to say im part of one. signed my contract just the other day! the name of the church is pax north. on our website it says this:
out of the 30-something or so churches ive visited and/or frequented in the past, only one other church besides pax seemed to get the whole ‘love your neighbor as yourself’ thing. its pretty refreshing.
as i sat here at my desk overlooking my new neighborhood i heard a gunshot ring out down closer to the water. hope it missed..