Congregational transformation often occurs in the midst of crisis. This project addresses the challenge of getting a small, struggling coastal New Jersey congregation to open up and respond to the changes in its local context. This project began as an effort to embrace the changed community in terms of rapid immigration in northeastern Monmouth County. This effort was meet with resistance. This project direction was side-tracked by the more serious contextual reality – the crisis of Superstorm Sandy. The immediate needs of the community, the congregation and the church's physical structures itself derailed the initial project effort. However, the congregational response to the October 2012 Superstorm set the stage for the very transformation the initial project aimed for, namely, congregational outreach to the broader community. By developing flexible approaches to the crisis in the community context, the congregation recognized that, in spite of its small size, it could make a real difference to survivors of Superstorm Sandy by focusing on a particular outreach project. The congregation's efforts to reach out and assist others in this crisis has reshaped their approach to the larger community context and created new pathways for outreach and involvement.
|School Location:||United States -- Connecticut|
|Source:||DAI-A 77/03(E), Dissertation Abstracts International|
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