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The idea of British identity has been thrown into question by the debates around the EU Referendum, but now that Brexit is here, it's time to think positively and constructively about Britain's future. How might Britain as a multinational state understand its own defining moral and political commitments in relation to its European neighbours? And if, as many suggest, a resurgence of English nationhood has been the driving force behind Brexit, how might the Church of England, as the 'national Church', respond to this and the many other missional challenges it faces? Those of us still wondering what to make of Brexit - including thoughtful Christians, politicians, journalists, think-tanks and religious leaders - will find much to stimulate thought and discussion here. The contributors have a wealth of specialist knowledge of Brexit and the EU; they draw on this and the legacies of Anglican - and more broadly Christian - social and political theology to offer their rich and nuanced responses to a range of crucial questions.
William Sloane Coffin has fought for social justice and argued that faith must be at the heart of political and intellectual life. This is a collection of his most memorable words, spoken over a 40-year ministry. They are not sermons - the longest quotation is probably 300-400 words - but rather sentences and paragraphs that reflect the heart of his message. It is arecord of his remarkable public words on issues ranging from charity and justice, politics, economic issues, the environment and nuclear disarmament, to the meaning of faith, the church and a minister's responsibility.
Holiness and hedonism. Lonesomeness and community. Tradition and progress. Highly regarded commentator on Christianity and popular culture Rodney Clapp argues that these great tensions form the bedrock of American history and our current culture. Utilizing the life and music of Johnny Cash to illustrate these and other American contradictions, he probes these phenomena with sharp theological questions--seeking the language and knowledge that will enable us to reach across political and cultural divides and encourage a more graceful and constructive negotiation of current contradictions.
This book is my story about growing up in a Black girl's body. It's about surviving in a world not made for me.
Austin Channing Brown's first encounter with a racialized America came at age seven, when she discovered her parents named her Austin to deceive future employers into thinking she was a white man. Growing up in majority-white schools and churches, Austin writes, 'I had to learn what it means to love Blackness,' a journey that led to a lifetime spent navigating America's racial divide as a writer, speaker and expert helping organisations practice genuine inclusion.
In a time when nearly every institution (schools, churches, universities, businesses) claims to value diversity in its mission statement, Austin writes in breathtaking detail about her journey to self-worth and the pitfalls that kill our attempts at racial justice. Her stories bear witness to the complexity of America's social fabric and invite the reader to confront apathy, recognise God's ongoing work in the world and discover how Blackness-if we let it-can save us all.
The church of Jesus Christ finds itself at a very unique moment in history. The average Christian living in the "economically advanced countries" enjoys a level of prosperity that has been unimaginable for most of human history. At the same time, over 2.5 billion people in the Majority World (Africa, Asia, and Latin America) live on less than $2 per day, with many of these people being Christians. Ironically, it is amongst the "least of these" in the Global South that the global church is experiencing the most rapid growth. All of this raises profound challenges to the global church. How can churches and missionaries in the Majority World effectively address the devastating poverty both inside their congregations and just outside their doors? How can churches in the economically advanced countries effectively partner with Global South churches in this process? The very integrity of the global church's testimony is at stake, for where God's people reside, there should be no poverty (Deuteronomy 15:4; Acts 4:34). For the past several decades, microfinance (MF) and microenterprise development (MED) have been the leading approaches to poverty alleviation. MF/MED is a set of interventions that allow households to better manage their finances and start small businesses. From remote churches in rural Africa to the short-term missions programs of mega-churches in the United States, churches and missionaries have taken the plunge into MF/MED, trying to emulate the apparent success of large-scale relief and development organizations. Unfortunately, most churches and missionaries find this to be far more difficult than they had imagined. Repayment rates on loans are low and churches typically end up with struggling programs that require ongoing financial subsidies. Everybody gets hurt in the process: donors, relief and development agencies, churches and missionaries, and--most importantly-the poor people themselves. This book explains the basic principles for successfully utilizing microfinance in ministry. Drawing on best practice research and their own pioneering work with the Chalmers Center, Brian Fikkert and Russell Mask chart a path for churches and missionaries to pursue, a path that minimizes the risks of harm, relies on local resources, and enables missionaries and churches to minister in powerful ways to the spiritual and economic needs of some of the poorest people on the planet. The insights of microfinance can play a tremendous role in helping to stabilize poor households, removing them from the brink of disaster and enabling them to make the changes that are conducive to long-term progress. Moreover, when combined with evangelism and discipleship, a church-centered microfinance program can be a powerful tool for holistic ministry-one that is empowering for the poor and devoid of the dependencies plaguing most relationships between churches in economically advanced countries and churches in poor nations.
"What can I do?" That was the question Diane Latiker asked of herself as she watched the teens in her Chicago neighborhood succumb at an alarming rate to gangs and gun violence. Her answer started small, inviting ten kids into her living room to talk about their struggles and dreams. But over the years it grew. With the help of God, her family, and many other people along the way, Diane's Kids Off the Block morphed from a personal crusade to do what she could into a nationally known program that has helped more than 3,000 at-risk Chicago teens. In this powerful, energizing book, she tells her incredible story to men and women who are sick of sitting behind their keyboards watching the world crumble and are ready to do something to make a difference. Through doubt, financial strain, and deep grief over lives lost, Diane has never lost her faith that God called her to this life-transforming work. In these pages she'll show you that God is calling you to do something too. Maybe something that feels small . . . definitely something that will change the world.
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