The Interdenominational Theological Center (ITC) is developing a learning community of congregations grappling with the impact of changing economic and environmental conditions on their sense of identity, vocation, and approach to ministry. Congregations thrive when their identity, vocation, and ministry align in service to shared mission. Threats to thriving in Black congregations frequently emerge as a result of environmental and economic shifts in the communities and ecosystems they serve. Indicators of these threats frequently appear in the form of changing local demographics, gentrification, aging physical facilities, and resource challenges. This project proposes to invite Black congregations in the Southeastern United States who understand themselves as missional and/or prophetic to explore how they may mine their congregational stories, practices, and identities to recalibrate their relationship to the changing landscapes in which they do ministry. The ITC is working with three partners to facilitate an interdisciplinary, participatory learning journey for a network of up to 16 congregations that includes congregational self-inquiry, local peer congregational learning, and participation in a regional congregational learning community.
Thriving Prophetic Congregations