Crossing Religious Lines

February 28, 2008 8:08:11 PM PST
A well known Fresno Pastor and community activist is now wearing another hat: talk show host."We're grateful we have an opportunity to project hope."

Any given Thursday you can find H. Spees at KNXT the Catholic Television Station for the San Joaquin Valley.

We love our City of Fresno but you know what? Out of all the cities in America, Fresno has the highest rates of concentrated poverty.

Spees was approached by the Catholic Diocese of Fresno to do a television show inspiring viewers to move beyond their living rooms and into their communities. It's called "This is our City." It's a ground breaking move since H. Spees is a Protestant Pastor.

H. Spees, Inner City Pastor: "I say what comes from the heart goes to the heart, I love talking to people who are making a transformational difference in our city and just letting them tell their story."

On this Thursday Spees is interviewing Ricardo Garcia Senior Pastor at Restoration Outreach Christian Center in Downtown Fresno.

Garcia was once a hardcore gang leader, he was shot in the mouth and stabbed in the back, and served time behind bars. He's now a free man, and he's freely telling H. The ugly details of his story.

Ricardo Garcia, Pastor: "I was embarrassed for many years I was ashamed, I didn't want to talk about my former lifestyle. But I knew I needed to use even that negative aspect of my life for something positive.

Spees pulls out the positive as he peppers Garcia with questions.

H. Spees doesn't just talk the talk he walks the walk, for instance, he moved his family to this inner city neighborhood near Blackstone and Divisidero fifteen years ago because he cares about the heart of the city.

It's the lowest income highest crime neighborhood in the city, but H. Says it gives him a glimpse of what god sees.

H. Spees: "And God has me there not because I'm a great person or a missionary, he has me there so my heart can be broken for the things that break his heart for the city.

What's in H.'s heart comes flowing out of his mouth and onto the airwaves.

"You can make a difference one kid, one family, and one street one neighborhood at a time. This is our city and I'm H. Spees."

'This is our city' airs on KNXT at eight o'clock Thursday nights.


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