Image by polandeze via FlickrI first blogged about the Christian Coalition for Urban Mission in November. They have a membership scheme now and the following is from their flyer: They haven't so far put the flyer online and so I suggest if you are interested in joining, you email CCUM and politely suggest they get a move on!
Are you, your church or your organisation committed to the transformation of urban communities and the people who live in them, through holistic Christian mission?
The Christian Coalition for Urban Mission is a new body, set up as a focal point for such concerns. It brings together agencies, denominational groups and Christians of all traditions working in many different ways, but all with the same goal of following Jesus’ call to his disciples to bring news that gladdens the hearts of poor people and to be salt and light for all.
Those who have worked in urban communities (inner cities, town and city centres, social housing estates and post-industrial areas) know that funding is important, but that long term change requires a change in the hearts of the people in the place. Material poverty and lack of opportunity is damaging, but so is poverty of spirit and lack of hope. Christian mission utilises the best of practice such as debt counselling and community development, community campaigns and youth work, but adds in long-term, relational, incarnational living –encouraging people often left out in the world’s priorities, to be God’s people.
The last decade has shown that this approach is needed whatever the wider political context. It will inevitably be even more important as the true impact of the recession makes itself felt through cuts in funding and staffing to the secular agencies that serve our urban areas.
The Christian Coalition has, by contrast, urban mission as top priority. Generalist agencies and church structures will have other demands upon them, which is why the Coalition’s voice to remind the more powerful of the Gospel priorities is so important.
It aims both to give heart to the local practitioner, and to provide that national focal point, to ensure that as far as we can, urban communities become better places to be, and where a confident Christian presence is yeast within those communities.
Its work is outlined in the leaflet, which also shows who has been part of bringing the new body together. We very much hope that you will want to be part of it too.
The Coalitions’s work is rooted in the Biblical concept of the Kingdom of God, fuelled by passion for the saving grace of Jesus, guided by the Holy Spirit, and intent on supporting the living out of the Good News of wholeness, justice and peace for humankind in the urban parts of our nation.
- add value to the existing agencies and networks
- utilise the strengths of the existing support mechanisms
- be inclusive of all with a heart for holistic/integral mission in urban contexts irrespective of theological perspective, denomination, or type of body