Our statement of belief declares “We believe in inclusive Church – church which does not discriminate, on any level, on grounds of economic power…”. Churches can be places offering a huge amount of service and support to those who live with economic poverty. At the same time, some living in poverty often experience exclusion from faith communities, there are things that churches could do better to ensure this doesn’t happen. The resources here are to support our churches in this work. We are grateful to Savi Hensman, lead IC trustee on Poverty for drawing these resources together.
Britain is the world’s seventh largest economy and yet people are going hungry. Half a million people have visited foodbanks in the UK since Easter 2013 and 5,500 people were admitted to hospital in the UK for malnutrition last year. One in five mothers report regularly skipping meals to better feed their children, and even more families are just one unexpected bill away from waking up with empty cupboards. Over half of people using foodbanks have been put in that situation by cut backs to and failures in the benefit system, whether it be payment delays or punitive sanctions.
There are varying views on the causes of poverty and economic exclusion and how these can be reduced. Some politicians and media blame the poor, but here are a few alternative perspectives for discussion and reflection.
Poverty: The Inclusive Church Resource
The Inclusive Church Resource book series is published by Darton Longman and Todd.
Designed as resource books for churches, each book has an introduction, theological reflection, stories from lived experience and a practical resource section
There are 6 books in the series.
Disability by John Hull
Mental Health by Jean Vanier and John Swinton.
Sexuality by Susannah Cornwall
Poverty by Susan Durber.
Ethnicity by Michael Jagessar
Gender by Rosemary Lain Priestley.
The book on Poverty has an introduction by Inclusive Church trustee Savi Hensman. Susan Durber is Theology Advisor for Christian Aid. The book contains stories of lived experience from individuals and churches. The resource section is drawn together by Church Action on Poverty.
This is a really exciting project for Inclusive Church and we are proud to be working in partnership with DLT.
A comment in from someone who has read the first 2 books:
"Have just received the first books, and dived into one of them. They are excellent, and all churches should have them for the clergy, and PCC."Buy Now
Organisations working on poverty in the UK Check out the Church Urban Fund, Church Action on Poverty, Christians Against Poverty and Children's Society on our links page.