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A People of Mission

Posted by Dave Griffith on May 8, 2015 at 5:35 PM Comments comments (0)

This week we hosted a group from Church of the Redeemer. They wanted to see firsthand our work at St. Barnabas Mission, our shelter in West Philadelphia for woman with children and our youth center at Third Street in Old City Philadelphia, work that they actively support.


I deeply appreciate our relationship with the parishes of the Diocese with whom we have a strong affil...

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Last week in April

Posted by Dave Griffith on April 30, 2015 at 2:25 PM Comments comments (0)

Friday, May 1st I will mark my second year as a member of the Episcopal Community Services team.

For 145 years the agency has served the most vulnerable. Our focus is to provide the tools and services to individuals to lift themselves up and out of poverty and restore the dignity of choice.

What I have learned in these two years is that ...

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Posted by Dave Griffith on April 4, 2015 at 8:10 PM Comments comments (0)


Last Friday was a bookend day. The days at ECS are long and most days they are hard, more for the program staff than me, but hard nevertheless. What makes this work worth it are those moments when a client responds, when a client’s situation changes for the better, when you see a program’s impact result in a positive outcome for an individual or family. What als...

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A look ahead

Posted by Dave Griffith on March 22, 2015 at 11:25 AM Comments comments (0)

Last Saturday ECS and the University of Pennsylvania’s School of Social Policy and Practice hosted our Partners in Outreach annual conference. Titled “Called to Service, Volunteering in Excellence”. This year we came together with Penn and piloted a program we want to host on a regular basis; both locally and in time, nationally. As a practical matter to effect...

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Lift up, Lift Out

Posted by Dave Griffith on February 14, 2015 at 8:55 PM Comments comments (0)

When I get asked about the work we do at ECS, I often find myself talking about our employees, programs, interns, and volunteers committed to working in challenging conditions to do the work that serves our region’s most vulnerable individuals.


Our youth programs consist of ECS’ Out of School Time (OST) program for elementary and middle-schoolers, the Seeing Youth Succeed prog...

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Poverty is Not Sexy

Posted by Dave Griffith on January 22, 2015 at 5:45 PM Comments comments (0)

Poverty is not sexy.

It is not a cause that stirs the blood like education, homelessness, domestic violence, earthquake relief, or floods.

It is a topic clouded by the issues of economic diversity and race.

It is pervasive and no one issue can lay claim to being a root cause.

But poverty is the issue in our society. It robs individuals of choice. Choice that man...

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St Georges on MLK Day

Posted by Dave Griffith on January 19, 2015 at 9:05 PM Comments comments (0)

Sunday in the rain and ice I made it to St George Ardmore to deliver the following ECS Sunday sermon. Some common themes but on this MLK day the Call to Service rings ever true. If you are a reader of Muddy Boots some of this will be famaliar. 

Let the words of my mouth, and the meditation of my heart, be acceptable in thy sight, O LORD, my strength, and my redeemer.

Good Morning. My name is Dave Griffith and I am honored to be with you thi...

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New Year's Resolution as Advocacy

Posted by Dave Griffith on January 1, 2015 at 10:40 AM Comments comments (0)


January first is the traditional time for New Year’s resolutions. Some you pick and some get picked for you. My daughter got engaged right before Thanksgiving and I have been assigned the task of being thirty pounds lighter by the time I walk her down the aisle. We will get there.

As I think about resolutions I can’t help of also thinking about advocacy. Advocacy is defined as giving aid to a cause; active verbal supp...

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Peace, Joy and especially Hope

Posted by Dave Griffith on December 20, 2014 at 11:45 AM Comments comments (0)

We trace our family roots in part back to Wales. As a result I have an interest in the region and specifically the literature. One of my favorite lines, and especially in this season of advent, comes from a Welsh blessing.


Peace in this season of Peace.

Joy in this season of Joy.

Hope in this season of Hope.


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A perspective on Ferguson from Wikipedia

Posted by Dave Griffith on December 1, 2014 at 10:00 PM Comments comments (0)

“Modern humans (Homo sapiens or Homo sapiens sapiens) are the only extant members of the hominin clade, a branch of great apes characterized by erect posture and bipedal locomotion; manual dexterity and increased tool use; and a general trend toward larger, more complex brains and societies.[3][4] Early hominids, such as the australopithecines whose brains and anatomy are in many ways more similar ...

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18 Month's In

Posted by Dave Griffith on November 16, 2014 at 3:20 PM Comments comments (0)

Today's sermon that I delivered at The Redeemer in Bryn Mawr. Talking about our call to service, our focus, and the attributes of leadership we look for in doing our common work:

Let the words of my mouth, and the meditation of my heart, be acceptable in thy sight, O LORD, my strength, and my redeemer.

Good Morning. My name is Dave Griffith and I am honored to be with you this morning h...

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Silence is not an Option

Posted by Dave Griffith on November 8, 2014 at 3:10 PM Comments comments (0)

As Executive Director I am often asked about ECS’s focus. My answer after 18 months, and no doubt shaped by my 35 years in the for profit world, is on the surface simple and straightforward, but as I am learning in my new craft, deeply complex and filled with at times with conflicting interests and challenges.

Our focus is to confront poverty where ever we meet it. We believe that the way out of poverty...

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Finding Common Ground

Posted by Dave Griffith on September 6, 2014 at 5:40 PM Comments comments (0)

I am a member of the World Affairs Council of Philadelphia. The Council has three major program platforms, talk, teach and travel, built around the notion of creating informed world citizens. I am especially fond of the practice of bringing individuals from different perspectives and traditions together to speak on the same issues. After all in the tradition of our founding father the nation...

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Our Strategy is to Listen

Posted by Dave Griffith on August 17, 2014 at 2:00 PM Comments comments (0)

We have been talking at ECS about our future as an agency. The discussion is framed in the voices of our clients. Given my business background I always thought that the road to success came through listening to your customers, finding the pain so to speak, and providing solutions and services that made that pain go away; the “voice of the customer” to steal a phrase from the business...

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Goodbye Mr. Fleschner

Posted by Dave Griffith on August 4, 2014 at 7:20 AM Comments comments (0)

This Sunday at Church of St. Luke and The Epiphany on 13th street we said goodbye to Art Fleschner, our long time office manager here at ECS. Art had recently retired and his passing was a shock to all who knew him.

You never know when your time is up. The good book tells us always to be ready. My overwhelming sense is that Art was ready and at peace with himself.

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Lead with Mission and Worship will follow.

Posted by Dave Griffith on July 28, 2014 at 10:55 PM Comments comments (0)

We are working with a number of parishes though our ECS consulting group to help them build capacity and address some other key issues. Some of our work has been to run strategic planning sessions, facilitate stewardship best practices, looking at governance and financial issues, review installed technology, and to offer assistance in getting new missions off the ground that deal with the issues of poverty ...

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An Entry Level Job

Posted by Dave Griffith on June 30, 2014 at 10:00 PM Comments comments (1)

I have the opportunity through my membership with the Philadelphia World Affairs Council to hear some really bright people talk about some of the important issues of our day. Over the years we have heard from Prime Ministers, Presidents, Governors, Generals, and Senators, but the folks I really enjoy are the scientist and educators who have studied a field and bring insight and diversity of opinion to a given issue. Today we had...

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Mr. Anderson

Posted by Dave Griffith on June 20, 2014 at 7:50 AM Comments comments (0)

These days we seem to be thinking a lot about transitions. On July first for the first time in twenty five years Jim Anderson our COO will no longer officially be part of ECS. I call attention to the official part because he will retain a consulting relationship for some time. Yesterday we celebrated as an ECS family his career. The marketing team filmed a video of different employees commenting on the relationsh...

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