Day 5Taylor and Susan
FieldIn the Lower East Side of Manhattan, where Taylor and Susan
Field live, residents are beginning to see other ways to make a living besides
prostitution and dealing drugs. In this area, where drug dealing was a family
business passed down through generations, kids are raising money for mission
trips instead of hustling on a street corner.
Mission: To minister to people of the Lower East Side of Manhattan
and on local university campuses
Prayer request: Pray that the number of new fellowships would
continue to grow in the Lower East Side of Manhattan and that ministry
opportunities would continue to open up for the Graffiti church.
Five years ago, this would not have been the case. A church and community
missionary, Taylor says that when he and Susan first arrived 16 years ago,
seven people died drug-related deaths.
The start of the Graffiti Baptist Center five years ago has helped alleviate
the drug and prostitution economies by directing residents to legitimate jobs
in the area.
The Center also provides education to parents and
families on finances, parenting skills and job searching. Following the tragedy
of September 11, 2001, many new opportunities for ministry emerged at the
Center. Counselors remain on duty to comfort residents, and the Center is still
helping people recover from economic downturn. The Center provides jobs at its
facility as well as tutoring positions at several of its sites throughout the
The challenge now is teaching these people how to grow in Christ, Taylor
says. Kids are graduating from high school for the first time, and people are
coming to Christ. Weve moved beyond survival, and now were teaching more
effective living...living to be more like Christ.
Taylor and Susan Field spell out grace for the diverse
population of Alphabet City in the Lower East Side of
PHOTOS BY GIBBS FRAZEUR
In addition to Graffiti, the Fields were instrumental in starting The
Journey, a congregation geared toward young professionals. This need to reach
out to the very poor along with the wealthy has emerged recently as luxury
apartments pop up next to rundown buildings, and the two economies are pressed
together. Taylor says he sees himself as sort of a bridge builder.
Susan, a student evangelism missionary, serves as a Baptist campus ministry
director for New York City, and also acts as a bridge builder on the campuses
of Columbia and New York Universities. She is trying to help students there
make the connection between their sometimes- unflattering concept of
Christianity and the person of Jesus Christ.
Ironically, she says, Columbia University used to be a training school for
From my perspective, these students are coming with a set of presumptions
about truth and how you go about seeking that out, Susan says. My job is to be
a bridge and to translate the truth about Christ into palatable language for
people who have a skewed concept of Christianity.
Most of Susans ministry is one-on-one mentoring with young women who have
questions about Christianity and how to live the Christian life. How do you
pray? or How do you have a wholesome relationship?
These are just a few of the questions that come from nonbelievers who want
to understand or challenge biblical teachings. Out of these conversations come
opportunities for Susan to share Christ.
Susans and Taylors ministries complement each other, because the church
plants and Bible studies that Taylor serves are good opportunities for students
to worship or have their prejudices about Christians dispelled.
A Southern Baptist Convention entity supported by the Cooperative Program and theAnnie Armstrong Easter Offering® ©Copyright 2013 North American Mission Board, SBC