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Blessed are the Poor: Engaging the Community Toward Social Transformation

By Bryan Tener

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'Blessed are the Poor' Available for Purchase

The webinar series “Blessed Are the Poor: Engaging the Local Community For Social Transformation” is now available for purchase at the Discipleship Ministries web store.

The series brings together local church and organization leaders and denominational leaders for conversations about spheres of poverty and how the local church can engage the community. Each of the five sessions dives into topics on poverty that lead to discussions on race, justice, myths about poverty, and more. The sessions seek to create space for reflection and to offer helpful insight from local practitioners so that local church leaders and their congregations can take action steps toward building the beloved community.

Each session lasts approximately two hours and includes a downloadable resource that can be used as a group study or as a helpful guide for a sermon series.

Session topics include:

  • Economic Poverty
  • Cultural Poverty
  • Physical Poverty
  • Spiritual Poverty
  • Political Poverty

Cost for the series is $15 and is available at the web store.

October 22, 2020 - Economic poverty

Rev. Dr. Michael L. Bowie, Jr., the National Director of Strengthening the Black Church for the 21st Century (SBC21), and Rev. Mary Downey, CEO and founder of Community Hope Center, will have a conversation on the experiences of economic poverty, the role of the church in engaging the community, and working towards justice while offering compassion so that all would have the opportunity to thrive. From a theological and biblical understanding of who God is and how we relate to God and one another, our two panelists will help to offer stories of lives transformed as well as some lessons learned and best practices so that local congregations can take action.

November 17, 2020 – Cultural Poverty

Rev. Dr. David Wilson and Donna Pewo, both serving in the Oklahoma Indian Missionary Conference, will help lead our discussion and learnings around how the church can most effectively engage their community and support and care for those who have experienced a loss of culture and with it their identity. Through looking at the history of Native American peoples in relation to the church and the dominant culture that sought to eliminate the diverse indigenous cultures, they will offer their wisdom, learnings, and stories from their particular ministries so that local churches can begin to engage their community in those places where people are seeking to reclaim and renew their identity in ways that are supportive, helpful, and life-giving.

December 15, 2020 – Physical Poverty

Micheal Pope and Ann McCullen are our conversation partners as we discuss issues related to physical poverty, wholeness, and what healing looks like and how it is experienced through their vocations and ministry settings. Through their experiences, the experiences of their communities, and their vocation, they will offer insight for the local church as it seeks to offer life to others in ways that can be adapted to particular contexts. Together we’ll discover and learn how the local church can partner with others, engage the community around them, and offer the care needed so that life can flourish.

January 14, 2021 – Spiritual Poverty

Bishop Reuben Saenz from the Great Plains Annual Conference and Tweedy Navarrete from Four Corners Native American Ministry will continue our conversation on poverty by focusing on spirituality and what it means to live in hopelessness, how we experience hope, and what it means to share hope with others. Their wisdom and experience from their leadership and ministry will guide our learnings so that local churches and leaders can engage their community and offer resurrection hope in transformative ways.

February 16, 2020 – Political Poverty

Levi Bautista from Church and Society will join us for conversation on what it means to go unheard, the experience of political poverty, and what it means that God hears and calls the church to listen and stand with those who go unheard. Our learnings will help us discern God’s call on how the church can actively participate, support, and stand with those in our local and global communities and what steps leaders can begin to take to help lift up voices that cry for justice.

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