“In August of 2001 my wife and I said our “I do’s” in a small church in the middle of everywhere (nowhere) South Dakota. As a Cherokee native man who can trace his ancestry back to land in Georgia before the Trail of Tears, marrying a woman who can trace her ancestry back to the Mayflower, we both knew God was leading us into an interesting lifetime together.
After graduating from college in Oklahoma and our first eight years of ministry spent in Saginaw, MI, we arrived with our two daughters in Muskegon. We felt a fresh calling to be a part of ministering in the midst of a new (to us) and interesting urban community, we just didn’t know what that really meant. Over the last six years in ministry here, God has introduced us to the richly diverse community of neighbors in Muskegon, who have contributed tremendously to the story of our lives.
Community enCompass has been a part of that community. They have exposed us to the principles of asset-based community development, which led us to explore the methods of organizations like the Christian Community Development Association. This has changed the face of how we partner in ministry in the city of Muskegon - as neighbors rather than outsiders.
This past fall we had the opportunity to attend the Taste and See event for the first time, and, while we knew Community enCompass was involved in community work efforts, we didn’t quite understand the breadth of that work until this event.
During the tour we were treated to a walk through the Sanford house rehab. Being interested in becoming core city homeowners ourselves, we inquired about what it might take to partner in a future rehab project. Since they were in the middle of a current rehab, we quickly found they were up to their eyeballs in finish
work in the Sanford project, and the next rehab project seemed a distant potential. However, we committed to pray toward God's will for future possibilities. Much to our surprise we received an email just a month later simply stating, “Hey guys! Interested in checking out a house with us?”
Thus began the exploration of and commitment to the Ransom house project that is currently underway.
From the moment we said “I do” to each other, we knew there was an amazing and interesting story that God wanted to lead us into together. Through the simple act of a Taste and See tour, we were exposed to the incredible ministry work neighbors are doing with Community enCompass. We certainly didn’t expect to come away from the tour as homeowners that night, but in a way we did. We count ourselves blessed to be able to continue our amazing and interesting life story in Muskegon as neighbors in the McLaughlin neighborhood”.
-The Lenertz family have been involved in every step of the Ransom Rehab home. We hope that their connection to Community enCompass continues to grow as they live out their lives in the Muskegon downtown area.
Taste & See is an annual progressive dinner & tour. Come and get a taste of what it's like to live, learn, work, grow and play here in Muskegon, come and experience the work God is doing in the Downtown Muskegon neighborhoods.
Tickets available for the 5th Annual Taste & See, Sept 27th HERE