Allow me to start off this reflection by stating that I am extremely uncomfortable with organized religion. I would never judge someone on their beliefs, but I would be lying if I said I wasn’t critical.
I understand that Chuck Blair is a pastor and that the way he speaks to large groups is probably always similar to sermons. Therefore, I will admit, I did not like his presentation style.
However, his content was phenomenal. He uses his religion to help people with their addiction problems. Blair is not judgemental. He is not a person in long-term recovery but he surrounds himself with people that are and he tries to be as understanding as possible.
Blair began New Church Live seven years ago. His congregation is primarily young adults. He makes a point to say that his mission statement for the church is a “Monday-Morning church”. That phrase is not literal. Blair explains that he only wants to discuss issues that will affect people’s lives, that will matter. In essence, he only wants to preach on Sunday things that will still affect people on Monday morning.
Because of his accepting tone, his congregation is mostly created by word-of-mouth referrals. The biggest thing the church advocates for is “love is love”. Using that mantra, that is how Blair and his congregation help people with addiction issues because all “you can do is love them”, Blair said.
Blair often goes to Kensington and goes around and provides people with “Blessing Bags”. These blessing bags usually include candy, toothbrushes, snakes, wipes, etc.
In addition to going to Kensington, Blair makes a point to have a once-a-year sermon that focuses on specific issues. His most recent one was on addiction, but a previous one touched on suicide.
Although I do not particularly like organized religion, I can appreciate his work of trying to improve the surrounding communities.