Matthew Cork & Kenneth Kemp – Why Not Today

why not today

The lowest caste in India, called the Dalit people, count 300,000,000. Normally the Dalits (untouchables) are excluded from education, obliged to perform the lowest of jobs, exploited in sex-trafficking,  slavery, discrimination, and poverty. I saw them when visiting Hyderabad in April 2008. Friends Church Yorba Linda, California pastor Matthew Cork visited the megacity a couple of months earlier and was struck (too) by what he saw. He committed his to partner with The Dalit Freedom Network to build 200 schools over ten years, a commitment of over US$20 million. Where he own local church underwent a leadership crisis in the naughties, the restated vision to be a church not inwardly focused, but enabling social change, the Global Freedom movement began to gain momentum. Then the economic crisis of 2008 hit hard. Slumdog Millionaire (2008) gave the opportunity to record a dramatic, feature-length film, Not Today (produced by the same group that did so for Courageous, Facing the Giants, and Fireproof).

Why Not Today – Trafficking, Slavery, the Global Church… and You tells two stories: one is the history and present situation of the Dalit people and the various efforts to set them free, in both soul and society. The other story is Cork’s own personal memories of his church ministry with hits and misses. In the end, the two collide in a kind of altar call to raise funds and support for the Global Freedom foundation to help the Dalits.

About the author

Matthew Cork obtained his undergraduate degree from Azusa Pacific University in Communications and Music. Matthew also earned a Masters degree in Pastoral Studies from Azusa Pacific University with an emphasis in Church Development.

Matthew has served in a number of key roles over his many years at Friends Church, including: Worship Pastor, Executive Pastor and the position he currently holds, Lead Pastor.  Matthew’s focus since 2003 has been on the renewal of Friends Church. Since 2007, Friends Church has launched a new vision called Global Freedom and has been instrumental in building a large number of Education Centers throughout India. Matthew is also in the process of writing a book about his own life experiences as a leader and the renewal of Friends Church through Global Freedom.

In addition to his local church experience Matthew is also a professional musician and national recording artist. Under his leadership, BASIX recorded five albums and traveled throughout the United States and the world.  Matthew lives in Yorba Linda with his wife Mardi and their three children: Nolan, Sophie and Ella. Mardi was born and raised in Perth, Australia and graduated from Azusa Pacific University. Mardi is an accomplished vocalist having performed in Phantom of the Opera at the Ford Center, Vancouver, Canada.

Thanks to NetGalley and the publisher for the complimentary electronic review copy.