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Why are most churches still segregated by race and culture? Is it possible to build intercultural ministries today? What are the challenges of creating and maintaining these ministries? How do intercultural churches give equal power and privilege to each culture? How do they avoid assimilating minority cultures into dominant cultures? Intercultural Ministry explores these questions and more with chapters from a racially and denominationally diverse group of pastors, theologians, and teachers who reflect on their experiences and experiments in intercultural ministry. Contributors include Curtiss Paul DeYoung, Amy Butler, Brad Braxton, Brandon Green, Daniel Hill, Angie Hong, Karen Oliveto, Carlos Ruiz, Sheila Sholes-Ross, Christine Smith, and more!
“Replete with stories of struggle and testimonies of faith, this collection can instruct and inspire believers who seek more excellent ways for all peoples. In its purview the book embraces diverse cultures and individuals to offer grace, challenge, and healing.”—Phyllis Trible, Baldwin Professor Emerita of Sacred Literature, Union Theological Seminary
“The ministers who wrote these chapters are intent on building intercultural communities that embody new forms of church and society. Sharing a common faith does not guarantee anything about common life, common worship, or common action. But with the creative, concerted, compassionate efforts reported here, we discover new ways to advance that work. This is a compelling resource for forward-looking congregations and students of ministry.” —Mary E. Hunt, Co-director, Women’s Alliance for Theology, Ethics, and Ritual (WATER)
“Buried deep in the subterranean recesses of this thoughtful, provoking, timely collection of essays representing the breadth of world Christianity is the fundamental, and ultimately transformative, not to mention far-reaching insight, that diversity, multiculturalism, inclusion, in and for theological education and ministry, are not enough. Their futures, and indeed the future of our planet, depend on the creation and nurture of intercultural competencies that are not only practical, but learned; critical but also hopeful; uncompromising, while being gracious; strategic, and at the same time tactical.
“This is a volume that will not only disturb but also comfort, disrupt as well as protect, both the faithful and the cynical, providing readers with ‘solid’ resources and ‘liquid’ perspectives for ministry and the living out of their lives—especially in these deeply troubled and troubling times.
“Intercultural Ministry is a must-read for all peoples of goodwill who desire the ‘creation of the fundamentally new that is also fundamentally better’ as they aspire to repair our broken world.” —Lester Edwin J. Ruiz, MDiv, PhD, Senior Director, Accreditation and Institutional Evaluation, The Association of Theological Schools, The Commission on Accrediting
“This impressive collection of essays gathers years of wisdom from seasoned pastoral leaders. By combining personal narrative, theological reflection on current events, and practical suggestions for the church, the authors offer abundant resources for pastors, scholars, and students engaged in the work of intercultural ministry. They do not sugarcoat the many challenges of this work in our time, but they do offer the outlines of hope for a more intercultural future.”—David H. Jensen, Academic Dean and Professor in the Clarence N. and Betty B. Freierson Distinguished Chair of Reformed Theology, Austin Presbyterian Theological Seminary
In pulling together the fifteen essays that make up Intercultural Ministry: Hope for a Changing World, editors Grace Ji‐Sun Kim and Jann Aldredge‐Clanton have done a great service to congregational leaders seeking a faithful way forward in the midst of the one of the defining challenges of our time – the fact that in a world of ever‐increasing mixing of races, ethnicities, and nationalities, the vast majority of churches remain stubbornly segregated. Acknowledging that creating intercultural communities is often a “disorienting, shocking, and at times, traumatic” process that never occurs without conflict and never comes to completion, the authors clear away naiveté and dismiss simplistic answers, offering instead a vision that is honest, complex and nuanced enough to actually be helpful. Even while addressing the difficulties, the authors offer testimony to the transformative power of such communities along with a stirring reminder that these churches continue a story that began with Christianity’s first congregations, the power necessary to create them being inherent in our faith itself and the Spirit that gave it birth. — Rev. LeDayne McLeese Polaski, Executive Director/Directora Ejecutiva ‐ BPFNA ~ Bautistas por la Paz
“Grace Ji‐Sun Kim and Jann Aldredge‐Clanton have done a phenomenal work as they gathered essays from a diverse group of religious leaders to discuss the creation and implementation of intercultural ministry in their communities. A copy of this masterpiece should be in every theologian’s library as a reference book which gives understanding to the importance of the creation of intercultural ministries as we attempt to live in our diverse communities which are constantly changing.” —Rev. Leslie Robin Harrison, MDiv.
For those committed to reflect God’s diverse future today, Intercultural Ministry is an invaluable tool. What passes for multicultural church today is often a surface mix of people of different races and ethnicities, but they essentially share the same culture. This book challenges us to go deeper—too deep perhaps for some!—as it provides the theological and practical resources to move the church toward genuine interculturality. It calls for openness on our part to the Spirit’s work to change the heart and soul of the church, and not just its face. —Al Tizon, Executive Minister of Serve Globally, Evangelical Covenant Church
“Creating and sustaining a ministry that embraces diversity within the leadership and the membership has been the great challenge of the church from its inception. This book is a much needed guideline on how to overcome those barriers.” —Marvin A. McMickle, PhD, President and Professor of Church Leadership, Colgate Rochester Crozer Divinity School
Table of Contents:
Introduction: Rev. Dr. Grace Ji-Sun Kim & Rev. Dr. Jann Aldredge-Clanton
Foreword: Rev. Dr. Dwight Hopkins
Part 1: Building Theological Foundations for Intercultural Churches
Chapter 1: Becoming the Beloved Community, by Rev. Dr. Amy Butler
Chapter 2: A Collective Amnesia: The Church and its Prophetic Call to Steward our Collective Memory, by Rev. Brandon Green
Chapter 3: Disrupting Babylon, by Rev. Emily McGinley
Chapter 4: Every Nation, Tribe, People, and Language: Building Intercultural Churches with the End in Sight, by Rev. Dr. Curtiss Paul DeYoung
Chapter 5: Embodying a Disruptive Journey: Pursuing Reconciliation in the Context of Intergenerational Trauma in the Body of Christ, by Rev. Carlos Ruiz
Part 2: Strategies for Building Intercultural Churches and Ministries
Chapter 6: Beyond Resurrection Sunday, by Rev. Sheila Sholes-Ross
Chapter 7: Pushing Boundaries in Baltimore: An Experiment in Radical Religious Openness, by Rev. Dr. Brad R. Braxton
Chapter 8: Laying a Foundation for a True and Viable Intercultural Church, by Rev. Christine A. Smith
Chapter 9: Just Power: 10 Principles for Building Intercultural Leadership Teams, by Rev. Dr. Daniel Hill
Chapter 10: Equals at the Table: Strengthening Our Identities to Engage with Others, by Angie Hong
Part 3: Future Possibilities of Intercultural Churches and Ministries
Chapter 11: Ministry at the Margins, by Rev. Dr. Karen Oliveto
Chapter 12: New Wineskins, by Rev. Peter Ahn
Chapter 13: Long Thread, Lazy Girl, by Rev. Katie Mulligan
Chapter 14: Ministry on a University Campus: Intercultural Successes, Failures, and Hope for the Future, by Rev. David Hershey
Chapter 15: The Kin-dom Coming in the Joyful Worship of the God of All People, by Rev. Karen Hernandez-Granzen
Conclusion: Rev. Dr. Jann Aldredge-Clanton & Rev. Dr. Grace Ji-Sun Kim
About the Author
Grace Ji-Sun Kim, MDiv, PhD, is an ordained minister within the PC(USA) denomination and Associate Professor of Theological Studies at Earlham School of Religion. She is author of ten other books, including The Grace of Sophia: A Korean North American Women’s Christologyy and Theological Reflections on “Gangnam Style”: A Racial, Sexual, and Cultural Critique, co-written with Joseph Cheah. Kim serves on several committees of the American Academy of Religion: co-chair of Women of Color Scholarship, Teaching and Activism Group, Research Grants Jury Committee, Comparative Theology Group, and Religion and Migration Group. She also blogs at Huffington Post, Sojourners and TIME.
Jann Aldredge-Clanton, MDiv, PhD, is a feminist theologian, author, chaplain, and teacher who leads workshops and conferences nationally and internationally. She serves as co-chair of the national, intercultural Equity for Women in the Church Community, adjunct professor at Perkins School of Theology and Richland Community College, council member of Christian Feminism Today, co-founder and co-leader of New Wineskins Feminist Ritual Community, and on the Dallas Workers’ Rights Board. She is the author of numerous books, including She Lives! Sophia Wisdom Works in the World; Earth Transformed with Music! Inclusive Songs for Worship; In Whose Image? God and Gender, Changing Church: Stories of Liberating Ministers, and Seeking Wisdom: Inclusive Blessings and Prayers for Public Occasions.