In a obscure way, I have aspired to work for the porn church for quite some time.
And right now I am in the midst of an internship with XXXchurch, the #1 Christian
This summer has taken me to places I never thought I would go and has changed
me in expansive ways. And it is not over. I am living in an older home with
three guys that attend Calvin college. I work with Craig and JR. Craig is the
founder and the primary voice of x3church. JR is a former television producer
and now is the media and business extraordinaire of XXXchurch. The day to day
is operated out of offices in Craig’s basement. It is close, fast paced
and a highly creative environment. Something new is created daily at x3church.
So, Craig and JR’s titles are Porn Pastor and one could conclude I am
Porn Intern. While in the office I have been working on a new venture of x3church
called Starving Jesus. It is a natural extension of x3church outside of porn.
The number one question people ask of xxxchurch is: “What can I do?”Starving
Jesus is a answer to that question. It is a call to get out of the pew and
into the community. It is encompassed in a book, 40 day tour, and website:
www.starvingjesus.com. The tagline for the tour is: “The Starving Jesus
Tour: 40 Days of Nothing.”The tour will visit churches and groups in
communities that are making strides in living out the way of Jesus.
I have been working on compiling info on the cities on the tour and on some
logistical elements during the first month of my internship.
June was filled with travel to a few Christ In Youth conferences at various
midwestern college locations, a music festival, and a porn show. CIY and Ickthus
music festival had XXXchurch in to address issues surrounding porn and myspace
to students. On the way home from a CIY, Craig and I decided to see what the “LA
Spa”was here in Michigan. There is a huge billboard on the side of the
highway advertising “massages and showers”for it so we pulled off
and check it out. It was a small building, well lit and had surveillance cameras
around the building. We go in one door and then knock on a second door with
a one way glass window. The room is tiny with a camera in the corner. A little
lady answers and asks if we want a massage. Craig and I are freaked out because
it real deal. We of course never had intentions of going in beyond the infamous
door. Yea, we jetted right then because it really was a prostitution house.
In the first few weeks at XXXchurch I learned of a few perks of being the
intern. I got some great fashion tips from Craig Gross himself. He informed
me that the popping of the collar is a Midwest thing and just should not be
done. I never have popped my collar so he didn’t have to tell me this.
I guess he was adjusting to the scene here in the Midwest. The second fashion
tip he threw at me was the idea of wearing long socks with shorts instead of
ankle socks. I have got on board with this one. I agree, it just feels better
to wear the long socks with shorts. Being that the office is at Craig’s
house, sometimes Jeanette, Craig’s wife makes you lunch. One day I ate
what was left and found out that she had not ate yet. Not a good idea. All
perks should be taken with care.
Soon enough I found out that JR is 40, old enough to be my dad and that he
would never meet my friends. We call his house the museum because he digs old
stuff. He interrogated me about dates I went on and could not get over my hip
style and hair. He never got to talk to me about the date with the hairdresser
from the mall because it never happened. Brace yourself for this story, because
the intern gets a shot to his ego. So I am new in the G-Rap and go to the mall
for a hair cut. Lame, yes, very. Anyways, she cuts my hair and I ask for her
number. She is cool with it. I call her later in the week and as her “what
is going on?”She then goes, “Well actually I am with my boyfriend.”What..!
Who gives you their number and has a boyfriend. Only in Grand Rapids.
Erotica LA was at the end of June and was held downtown Los Angles at the
convention center. Picture a very large room with a bunch of booths with much
pornography and porn paraphernalia. Erotica LA 2006 was by far the most successful
X3church outreach to date. 3,200 free bibles weighing in at 1700 hundred pounds
were given away within a 24-hour period at
the largest consumer porn show in the world.
You may wonder how it was handling it and why we would go into such a place.
Simply no one else is. People are longing for hope. It is a place that Jesus
would have been. Craig and JR, assured me prior to the show, that I would be
shocked for about an hour and then I will see through it all. I saw through
it all quickly. I saw people who deep down wanted to be filled. They choose
porn to do so. The porn industry is about money, not passion and love. For
three days hope was brought to people who see little, a hope that will deliver.
There was no stereotypical porno guy at the show but men and women, young and
old that attended. I walk away from the porn show with a far greater understanding
of what compassion and love is and how it is lived out.
July was filled with much preparation for The Starving Jesus tour and some
web marketing projects for x3church. I am learning and growing and changing
every day. I am humbled to be a part of this.
August…I have to leave but prior to leaving get to take the new porn mobile
for a spin so I can’t wait for that.Thanks for taking the time to hear what
is happening with me!