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About Me

Formative Years
I have knocked about this planet since 1948, when my mother felt a compelling need to share me with the world as David T. Borton.  My life went fine until my first of many existential 1st Grade - Too Many Davids.crises - - 1st grade, W
urlitzer Elementary School. There, in a class of 31 students, I was one of five David’s.  Identity crisis smacked me right in the face.  At age 5,  I knew I needed a way to be different and I have been about that task ever since.  I blame the mothers of all those other David’s for my inability to follow routine.

Home was Western New York, within a German-Lutheran family where work and responsibility were at the core of our purpose.  Life was serious.  Shoveling snow -- next to godliness.  Memorizing
Martin Luther’s Small Catechism verbatim was part and parcel of salvation.  My academic career went along fine although I rarely applied myself.  I saved myself for baseball.  I played tons and tons of it.  I had a deadly arm from the outfield but struggled at the plate.  The curve ball gave me real grief.  Underneath that flip response, quick-witted remark, and smirk was a kid in search of something; just didn’t know what that was. 

I left home at 18 to attend college, never really looking back.  I only return to visit my Mom, elder brother, younger sister, and their families (Dad died in '89).  At college, too many mid-week beer parties and the Viet Nam war interrupted my education.   Wars do that.  Uncle Sam had my number; the draft was still in place.  When I received my draft notice, I thought about appealing to our draft board - - for about 3 seconds.   Our draft board resembled an octogenarian convention of the Daughters of the American Revolution.  So into the green machine I went for four very long years.

I came out of that war in one piece but returned from overseas a much more reflective young man, not quite as sure of so many things.  We had lost several flight crewmembers and those deaths turned my world and belief system upside down.  I went overseas believing in what we were doing and came home very embittered.  I felt duped.  Enough.  I got out and never looked back.

Education Comes thru Books and Sidewalks
Upon discharge, I re-entered college on the GI bill, earning a business degree from Florida Atlantic University.  Why business?  By default.  I didn’t have a clue what I wanted to do with my life.  Later on in my business career, I received a Master of Theological Studies from Trinity Lutheran Seminary.  Both were good experiences and I feel very fortunate to have had the opportunity to attend post-secondary schools.  Formal education has served me well.  But most of my deepest learnings have come from others.

Central America

In 1988, I had the delight of visiting Guatemala with
Alfalit International. Alfalit is an NGO throughout Central America, working to improve lives of people, one small group at a time.  It was an experience of a lifetime and one that has changed me forever.

Jorge Colindres Monzón, of Mayan ancestry, was our host.  Jorge was (RIP friend, 2008) Jorge Colindres Monzón, San Felipe, Guatemala.a Presbyterian minister and one who took his faith very seriously.  Oh, not the obsession with the Jesus quiz - - ‘Is he your personal Lord and Savior?' - - but much more rooted and grounded in the compassionate, caring, life-giving, healing and prophetic Jesus you find in the Gospel of Luke.  Jorge taught me so much about my own faith, as he whisked us all over the western highlands of Guatemala, visiting with Christian small-base communities.  Each community strived for its own improvement; be it literacy, cooperative farming, sewing cooperatives, weaving, etc.  Within each setting, I saw the Christian faith lived out to its fullest.

I have been back to Central America many times since.  I am hooked.  It has a tremendous draw for me.  Life is on the edge yet people seem more present to one another.  Poverty collectively grinds at their bones but they remain open to a tomorrow – a tomorrow I am not sure how well I would face. 

(cont'd on pg. 2)

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