Poor and the church

THE INTEGRATION OF HIGH SCHOOL STUDENTS SERVING AMONG FAMILIES IN HOMELESS CRISIS FOR TRANSFORMATIONAL MINISTRY

Author
Scott Mills D.Min.
Abstract
This project explored the transformational growth of high school students who served children in homeless crisis by implementing a pilot program at the Fort Wayne Charis House. The findings revealed student growth in three goal areas: greater cultural understanding, greater appreciation for life situation, and greater motivation to serve. The project explored biblical foundations and the causes and consequences of families in homeless crisis. It also examined similarities between “service learning” in the public schools and integrative ministry. Through this program, students built critical thinking skills, positive relationships, and a sense of responsibility as they engaged in serving their community.

Feed my lambs: transformation through living into the biblical imperatives of poverty alleviation

Author
Scott M Harding
Abstract
This thesis-project is a case study of the fellowship dinner ministry of the Church of the Messiah in Glens Falls, NY. In the spring of 2005 the congregation began a journey to transition from serving a Sunday afternoon community meal into creating a Sunday evening ministry, which involved: serving dinners to the community, creating a worship service targeted to the un-churched, and increasing the present food pantry. This project traces the path of this transition through the formation of leadership teams and evaluates the ministry and the parish in the present.

The church, poverty, and radical compassion: a first step through the threshold

Author
Kenneth Earl Hughes
Abstract
The persistence of poverty stands as a constant challenge to the Christian church. Unlike any other institution in society, the church is called by its foundational scripture and theological convictions to be brother and sister to those in need. This report explores how the contemporary church responds to this call. Against a backdrop of opinions and perspectives on poverty, the report proposes a renewed commitment to the radical compassion for the poor manifested by Jesus Christ in his teachings and life. It describes initial efforts in this direction pursued by the Threshold ministry of Decatur Presbyterian Church.

Don't swallow that camel: developing a preaching ministry that produces transformation in a church's participation in justice-related ministries

Author
Keith A Manry
Abstract
This project argues that there is a direct connection between references to God's concern for the poor and the oppressed in the preaching of a local church and the church's ministry to the same. It suggests that preachers can play a role in bringing about transformation in the area of justice by stressing the importance of justice in scripture and in the life of the believer. By studying the preaching and ministry of Media Presbyterian Church it shows that a preaching ministry concerned with justice can bring about transformation in a congregation's participation in justice related ministries.

Global education for children in suburbia: discipleship for changing the world

Author
Nanette E Roberts
Abstract
"Global education for children in suburbia: discipleship for changing the world" asserts children in an educational process from kindergarten through eighth grade, can make decisions as adults with a preferential option for the poor. Theological foundations show disciples recognize the power of empire and the call to live in partnership with those on the "underside of history." Research in religious education, historic and current, illuminated complexity; and ethnographic research provided foundation. From the creation of a leadership team and curriculum, the project became reality. With final results more longitudinal than acute in nature, value is assessed in the process.

A study on enhancing the life of faith through social ministries for the poor

Author
Chel San Son
Abstract
The author described how the faith of true servanthood has been applied to train the members of 'Beautiful Church' of Seoul. The author examined the meaning and importance of volunteer works from the Bible and history. In addition, the author studied John Wesley's movement of revival and his practice of love, and discussed the influence on personal and social holiness through it. Next, the author practiced a project called 'Diakonia Training School' for five weeks for ten members of Beautiful Church. All of the participants experienced many changes in their personal faith and the community of faith through the training. They also came to have influence.

Speaking truth to power: the prophetic practice of advocacy

Author
Duane Tyrone Kay
Abstract
The church is called to the prophetic role of being an advocate on the behalf of the oppressed. The author of this work was pastor of an urban church, the majority of whose members did not live in the community. The church's urban neighbors, local public housing residents, partnered with the church and other faith leaders to defend their rights as they were being pushed aside for the redevelopment of the city's public housing units. The result of this experience proved to everyone involved that the church can transform societal practices when speaking truth to power.

Toward an American Pentecostal eucharistic theology

Author
Johnathan E Alvarado
Abstract
An American Pentecostal eucharistic theology has yet to be fully developed. Historic Christian traditions have been co-opted into Pentecostal Eucharist traditions for 100 years; because Pentecostalism is burgeoning all over the planet, now is the time for such a theological contribution. This thesis builds upon the work of Simon Chan by affirming and critiquing evangelicalism's theological superimposition on Pentecostalism as it pertains to eucharistic theology. Chan's model is used to suggest how Pentecostals can construct eucharistic theology germane to their context and congruent with their broader theological claims. Further, it examines epiclesis as an aspect of eucharistic theology and notes its natural intersection with Pentecostal theology as the inroad to an expanded theological dialogue. The thesis discusses the implications of an American Pentecostal eucharistic theology in light of the poor. It is argued the eucharistic meal cannot be received without considering those who have little or nothing to eat, taking into account Paul's critique of the Corinthian community's socio-economic divisions and disregard for the poor.

Addressing local poverty through the establishment of a mission cell ministry at Rock Creek Baptist Church, Nashville, North Carolina

Author
T Blake Dempsey
Abstract
Ministry with people in or at risk for poverty is an integral facet both of an individual's spiritual formation and the church's faithfulness in its community. Training leaders to address local poverty will help Rock Creek Baptist Church develop a vision for ministry in Nash County. The director communicated biblical foundations, identified specific needs, and suggested potential partnerships, while emphasizing every-member ministry. As a result, Rock Creek has progressed toward becoming a missional church through relationships with local organizations, known as Mission Partners. The partnerships will provide opportunities to serve the poor together through gift-based, missional small groups.

Preaching and the mystical-indigenous imagination

Author
Vincent J Pastro
Abstract
Preaching in accompaniment of the poor is characterized theologically by a mystical-indigenous imagination rooted contextually in the indigenous poor. Jesus Christ the sacramental Word of the God of the poor is the Source of preaching. The author used traditional theological methodology with a preference toward Latin American theologians. He also interviewed several Mexican and Brazilian theologians. In the last chapter, the author included two homilies evaluated by parishioners and theologians. He concluded that the poor enjoy a special theological imagination that the preacher must necessarily respect while centering the preaching in the Source who is Jesus the sacramental Word.
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