For by grace you have been saved through faith; and not that of yourselves, it is the gift of God; not as a result of works, so that no one may boast. For we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand so that we would walk in them. (Eph 2:8-10)
Rich cared and labored for the poor and needy, but his was an evangelical orthodox faith not a progressive one. It stood through and against the kind of winds that are and will continue to buffet our post-modern age. There is a fullness and richness about a faith that stands its ground on the rock Jesus Christ while ministering in his name.
It is not a sterile faith that never touches the dirty parts of the world, and yet it is not a faith divorced from the historical incarnation. It is not focused on a vague spirituality which gathers dusty utopian dreams nor does it sink beneath a nihilistic ugliness that cannot conceive of real life. Instead it gathers life and grows more life even after the saint goes home to dwell forever with God.
Here is a memorial video to the memory of Rich. One of the musicians talking, Jim Abegg, is an old friend whom I haven’t seen for years. There is even richness in the telling:
And then here, standing on the rock, is my favorite video of Rich, singing the Doxology: