Mike MacIntosh Shares Lessons from Ground Zero
- Monday, January 27, 2003
He is a pastor and evangelist with a vision to win people to Jesus Christ, disciple them in Christ, and send them out for Christ. This threefold evangelistic vision has been strongly reflected in every area of his work at Horizon Chrisitan Fellowship in San Diego, California. In addition, Mike MacIntosh knows how to tackle a crisis.
As chaplain for the San Diego Police Department, MacIntosh has faced down fear and death. As a member of the national Spiritual Care in Aviation Response (SAIR) team, he provides spiritual care to the victims and families of airline disasters, in coordination with the American Red Cross.
And it was while on call for SAIR that MacIntosh found himself at Ground Zero, providing care for firefighters at the World Trade Center site in New York City. His recent book When Your World Falls Apart: Life Lessons from a Ground Zero Chaplain relates that tragedy to ones we all face throughout the course of daily life - the illnesses, financial disasters, family conflicts and divorces. MacIntosh shared a few of those lesson in the following interview.
Crosswalk.com: Ok well what we wanted to do um I’m going to be running an excerpt from the book ah When Your World Falls Apart but I also wanted to include like the day before an interview with you so that people can uh learn a little bit about you and your life a bit. I just wanted to check you’re still the pastor of Horizon Christian Fellowship, is that correct? And do you still do work for the San Diego Police Department?
Mike MacIntosh: Yes I do.
Crosswalk.com: And what led you to that kind of work?
Mike MacIntosh: Uh actually when I first started in San Diego I uh as a pastor and our church was growing so fast I thought that maybe I should be more involved in the community and instead of being in a social club like Lions or Rotary or something (opportunity?) to be a reserve police officer and I thought maybe I could be more effective that way. So I started out as a reserve officer and then as a number of years went by uh I helped establish a full-time chaplain (?) they saw the need for it.
Crosswalk.com: Right. So you have no prior police background uh before you became a pastor?
Mike MacIntosh: Right.
Crosswalk.com: Ok. Um and then you said that you have some advanced training and so forth in crisis work did that just evolved out of a natural need?
Mike MacIntosh: Right that just evolved, the more I got involved uh it was just part of the training that was necessary when Oklahoma City happened uh I had a friend that was a former director of the FBI and I contacted him and he said I know the guy in charge and feel free to go to Oklahoma City and introduce yourself and I’ll get in touch with him. And uh it was from there that I saw boy I need lots of training because it’s not just pastoral work in a situation like this this is a lot of grief counseling it’s a lot of emotional trauma for like many federal officers I spoke with I think one guy had been up forty-one hours when I first started talking to him another one had been up sixty-one hours
Mike MacIntosh: (of sleep?) so uh it just became a whole new area of learning for me
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