The Bowery Mission on one of downtown Manhattan’s infamous roads has a history of over 140 years to serve as a shelter for homeless people, drunkards, drug addicts, and other wandering souls. Jason Storbakken, a recent director of the Bowery Missions, shares the various buildings they used throughout the years, the leaders, financial ups and downs, and colorful characters that continued serving this mission outpost amidst the most dangerous quarters of New York City.
Bowery Mission: Grit and Grace on Manhattan’s Oldest Street not only illustrates the role of meals, hot showers, clean beds, warm clothes, and recovery programs but also the musicians and celebrities that came by and stayed for a while, yearly foot washing, and the various denominations that came are represented here, way out of their comfort zone, while contributing heartedly behind the red doors. Christianity with hands and feet, and – a funny episode – a leader’s cheek turned to enemies.
About the author
Jason Storbakken served as director of the chapel at the Bowery Mission for ten years and now develops curriculum for the ministry’s transitional programs. With his wife Vonetta, he founded Radical Living, a Brooklyn-based community organization. He is the author of Radical Spirituality and pastor of the Manhattan Mennonite Fellowship.