The Schrag Lectures for 2012: “What the Bible Says about the Hungry
and the Poor: A Mandate for Pulpit and Pew”
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The Sider Institute hosted on March 20-21, 2012, a major conference on the theme,“What the Bible Says about the Hungry and the Poor: A Mandate for Pulpit and Pew.” featuring three sterling speakers: the Rev. Dr. James Forbes, Senior Minister Emeritus at the Riverside Church, New York City, as the keynote speaker; Roger Thurow, Senior Fellow for Global Agriculture and Food Policy at the Chicago Council on Global Affairs, addressing global poverty and hunger; and Larry James, CEO of CitySquare, a vibrant inner-city mission in Dallas, Texas, addressing domestic poverty and hunger. For a 5-minute summary of conference highlights, click here.
Through that conference, the Sider Institute sought to encourage Christians throughout the greater Harrisburg, Pennsylvania region to join hands and hearts across geographical (the Susquehanna River) and racial divides to serve and support the poor—and agencies already serving the poor—with renewed commitment and a fresh and creative vision.
The first continuing initiative to emerge from that conference is an inter-racial and interdenominational pulpit exchange. Numerous churches and pastors have enthusiastically signed on to participate in that pulpit exchange in which white churches will open their pulpits to black pastors and, in like manner, black churches will open their pulpits to white pastors. When pastors occupy these host pulpits, we encourage them to preach on the conference theme—“What the Bible Says About the Hungry and the Poor.” If your church or pastor would like to participate in this important pulpit initiative, please contact Carol Hostetter, Assistant to the Sider Institute at Messiah College, at 717-796-5389 or at firstname.lastname@example.org.
The second initiative to emerge from the conference is a series of breakfasts, funded by the Sider Institute, bringing black and white pastors together for the sake of building relationships and exploring ways they might collaborate for the sake of the hungry and the poor. These breakfasts are scheduled for April 30, May 14, and June 4 at the Radisson Hotel in Camp Hill at 7:30 a.m. If you are a pastor and would like to participate in these breakfasts, contact Carol Hostetter, Assistant to the Sider Institute at Messiah College, at 717-796-5389 or at email@example.com.
The third initiative to emerge from the conference consists of plans made by small groups of black and white pastors and church members as they met in small group sessions during the conference.
Three groups submitted detailed plans for how they hope to build bridges across the racial divide in this part of Pennsylvania for the sake of the hungry and the poor. To view those plans, click forsmall group #1
, small group #2
, or small group #3