Tuesday, September 24, 2002

In the Sensus Plenior discussion from my last post about churches who serve their communities, Valerie asked:

I've been meaning to read more of (John) Perkins. I did Let Justice Roll Down a couple years ago. Would Beyond Charity be the one to read next for a fleshing out of the 3 R's?

I thought it would be worthwhile to post my answer to Valerie's question here instead of in Sensus Plenior, since it might get buried there and go unread by some who might find it useful. Here's my answer. Haven't read Beyond Charity, so I can't comment on that, but if you're looking for a place to find Perkin's 3 R's fleshed out, you should pick up a copy of Restoring At-Risk Communities which is a self-described handbook for the Christian community development movement

and describes the theology, practices, and strategies which undergird and fill out the Christian Community Development Association (CCDA).

BTW, Perkins' 3 R's are:

Relocation: Relocating to live among the poor.
Reconciliation: Being reconciled to God and man.
Redistribution: Redistributing resources and developing indigenous residents for community well being. (As Perkins is fond of saying, "You've heard it said, 'Give a man a fish and feed him for a day OR teach a man to fish and feed him for a lifetime.' But I ask you, 'Who owns the pond that determines whether or not a man can fish?.')

Restoring At-Risk Communities lays out Perkins' philosophy as well as anything, though Perkins always finds a way to slip in the 3 R's no matter what he's writing or speaking about, so pick up anything by Perkins and you'll find the 3 R's. I've also benefited from Bob Lupton's writings. In fact, Lupton writes the chapter on Relocation in Restoring At-Risk Communities. I've been meaning to post more about Lupton for those who are unaware, but I'm too tired now, I'll try and do something here on hotdogblog in the next couple weeks about Lupton.

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