Reflections from the Road: San Jose and Oakland

Dr. Kerry Swindle   |   May 01, 2018
NBA Staff and partners group photoNBA Staff and partners group photo

I was excited to go on this “NBA + OGMP On the Road” trip for two reasons. First: to get to spend time with the NBA staff (always fun!) and Rev. Terri Hord Owens. I was looking forward to meeting Terri. My term on the NBA Board ends this summer, and I didn't know when I would otherwise get this chance. I was also excited for selfish reasons. My pastor, Rev. Owen Chandler, and I wanted to do some fact finding at Recovery Café San Jose and Oakland Peace Center as we start to plan for a community kitchen at Saguaro Christian Church in Tucson, AZ.

The trip was SO rewarding on so many levels. Terri was a joy to get to know. She is very down-to-earth and approachable. Owen and I really enjoyed talking with her in the evenings. I was also so impressed with Recovery Café San Jose. That small church was struggling, but they had a vision and made it happen. They were an inspiration to both Owen and me. They helped us realize that we can get our project going, too. Owen has already gotten help from their group with lease agreements, etc. And I always enjoy time with NBA XPLOR Residents!

Mills Grove Christian Church (Disciples of Christ)Mills Grove Christian Church (Disciples of Christ)

To me, the most memorable time was at Mills Grove Christian Church as they received the gift of a projector screen for their church. I loved that their pastor, Rev. Clarence Johnson, involved the children. It wasn't a terribly expensive gift, but clearly it meant a lot to them. You never know how important a gift will be for someone. Their hospitality and music were a wonderful finish to the trip.

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As the health and social services general ministry of the Christian Church (Disciples of Christ), the National Benevolent Association partners with congregations, regions, general ministries, and a variety of Disciples-related health and social service providers to create communities of compassion and care. Founded in 1887 by six women responding to the needs of the day and on their doorsteps, for more than 130 years the NBA has continued to serve "the least of these." Learn more at


Recovery Cafe San Jose is a healing community for those traumatized by homelessness, addiction and mental health challenges. We are founded on the belief that every human being is precious, worthy of love and deserving of the opportunities to fulfill his or her potential.


As an emerging social entrepreneurship nonprofit model of ministry, the Oakland Peace Center exists as a physical space and a network of more than 40 Bay Area based nonprofits.