Enhancing the partnership: enlarging the relationship between the local church and community through biblical engagement

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Thesis
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Category
Online DMin Project  [ Browse Items ]
Edition
English 
Publication Year
2014 
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Abstract
Like many mainline churches in America today, the Mott Haven Reformed Church located in the South Bronx, New York, is struggling to survive in the midst of demographic and societal change. This is a small African American congregation with declining revenue and aged membership. The community that surrounds it has become eighty percent Hispanic; yet there isn’t a strong relationship between the church and this ethnic group. The project proposed creating shared vision by addressing community needs both physical and spiritual; fostering transformation through the use of hospitality; and enhancing cross cultural communication by using Bible engagement and social media. I explore the use of training, strategic planning, and collaboration; cross cultural experience combined with targeted outreach and proficiency in the digital arena. The project demonstrates how a small and struggling church can survive by effectively using these tools to help sustain itself while planting seeds that will bear fruit in the future. This is the story of one church’s journey toward its future, holding on to a proud 162-year history while trying to re-invent itself. It is the journey of a faithful remnant refusing to give up on itself or the community, convinced that it can again be “Emmaus” where they will meet the resurrected Christ. 
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