by Doug Paul | Director of Content at 3DM
I had a coaching call recently with a few people who have Missional Communities that are in the inner city. The “leaders” are predominantly white and they are going into neighborhood that are predominantly not (this isn’t to say, of course, that only minorities live in the inner city). I hear questions about this pretty frequently, so here are some quick tips if you’re starting a MC in an inner city minority neighborhood (if you happen to be white).
1. Don’t send in a million white people.
Seriously. Just because you have a lot of people that are willing to be part of this missional community doesn’t mean they all should stream in together. In my experience, it is FOUR at the most (+ a little extra room for kids). For a lot of reasons (most of them deserved), minorities have a difficult time trusting middle-class, white people. Don’t put up barriers that you can avoid. Having a brigade of white people come in is interpreted with dis-trust, unease and comes across as you being arrogant (savior on the white horse).
2. Find the Person of Peace.
Who is the person in the community who lives there, looks like the community, who the community trusts that can serve as the gatekeeper to the community? They are, at the very least, the co-leader of the community. The leader needs to look like the community in the same way that Lydia, in Acts 16, looks like the community as the first church in Europe is established.
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