Inner-City Ministry

Curated Resources on How to Navigate the Complexity of Missional Life and Ministry in the Modern City

Curated by Jason Cook

Partnering for Greater Success in Inner-City Ministry

How we think about other ethnicities made in the image of God guides what organizations churches partner with. It also should guide how churches co-labor with outside entities. For inner city churches, partnership is essential for the collective flourishing of neighborhoods. Often, churches enter partnerships with good intentions but the results are paternalistic and often   leave those being served still dependent upon the church or partner instead of moving to self-sufficiency.

In this video Chris Brooks, offers helpful guidelines for churches looking to partner with organizations or people that provide help for the soul and immediate needs.

  • Darrell L. Bock & Chris Brooks - Urban Ministry and Cross-Cultural Ministry

  1. Why are causal factors important to consider when seeking to remedy immediate needs?
  2. What are the key guidelines to effective partnership that Pastor Brooks offers?
  3. How might the concept of “compassion fatigue” affect how churches partner with organizations?

Prophetic and Holistic Multi-Ethnic Preaching

Churches continue to be divided across ideological and theological lines, and the task of preaching has become even more important and difficult. Nevertheless, there is a biblical expectation and duty for the preacher to preach prophetically to the whole person. Dr. Robert Smith Jr. identifies one heavenly vehicle to accomplish this holistic endeavor: the multi-ethnic church.

He also offers a practical framework for effectively communicating to diverse audiences. To preach the whole gospel to the whole person, the preacher must labor to “become all things” to his congregation for their good and Christ’s glory.

  • Preaching Prophetically to the Whole PersonRuntime: 27 min

    Jason Cook interviews Robert Smith, Jr.

  1. What does it mean to preach the whole gospel to the whole person?
  2. What does “spirit is greater that soil” mean in regards to our preaching?
  3. How might the transparency of the preacher minister effectively to those hurting?

Addressing Multi-Generational Poverty

Multi-Generational poverty has been a long-standing reality in many urban cities across America. Poverty’s cyclical nature leads people to and traps them in a system that keeps impoverished people entrapped. The church is uniquely poised to help remedy these issues. But how?

Pastor Chris Brooks shares his perspective on bringing holistic care to those in poverty. He challenges leaders to move from managing poverty, to moving people along to self-reliance.

  • Chris Brooks - The Church and Economic Renewal

  1. What economic and government worldview do you have?
  2. What might make a well-intentioned program function as encouraging multi-generational dependency?
  3. How might chronic unemployment and dependency impact those affected by it psychologically?
  4. Where in your city do you see this need?

Effective Ministry in Gentrified Cities

The fight against gentrification is over. Cities across America have bought into this method of renewal. While cities benefit from the increased revenue, many of its poor are displaced and experience injustice for the sake of progress. How does the church understand gentrification and get involved to minister to the displaced?

In this video Leroy Barber identifies, defines, and then challenges church leaders to think differently about their approach to urban ministry.

  • Leroy Barber - Urban Missional Communities

  1. How would you define gentrification?
  2. Has gentrification reached your city?
  3. What does “urban” really mean? Why is this important to your context?
  4. Why are “belt-way” areas generally where displaced persons settle?