The porch, though still part of the house, is both the access and connection to the city. Sitting close to the door, still sheltered by the house, is a group who are more passive, reflective, stationary, watching the world go by. They remind us that theology takes place when we sit back to reflect on the day's activities. We need time, with dialogue and group reflection, to evaluate how what we are doing affects the city. We also need to take a break and rest. Perhaps some of these individuals are staying close to home because the surrounding scene is so overwhelming.
On the steps and beyond, others are actively coming and going, connecting to the world, but keeping a biblical perspective. The ministry and the city are constantly influencing each other. Although there are abandoned buildings and other signs of poverty in the background, there is hope through empowerment, symbolized by the minister going out into the community carrying a fishing pole and worms.
The police officer represents the institutions of power with whom we must work. One hand is raised, blocking the flow of traffic the way official power sometimes oppresses the poor, while the other keeps society moving in an orderly direction. Public transportion, (the bus) carries workers to and from their jobs and is also how most inner city poor get to and from the ministry.
The business woman at the bottom of the steps has her back to the problems of the city, but clearly represents the financial resources that are necessary for urban ministry.