Oklahoma Conference of the United Methodist Church

Churches will examine poverty during seminar in Tulsa on Oct. 5


Two districts are co-sponsoring the seminar "Helping Without Hurting" on Oct. 5 at Boston Avenue UMC in Tulsa.

"We United Methodists really care for folks. However, sometimes we wonder if the $25 we gave someone really helped them," said George Warren, Bartlesville District superintendent. The seminar targets such concerns.

Brian Fikkert will lead the Saturday program. He is co-author of the book "When Helping Hurts: How To Alleviate Poverty Without Hurting the Poor …and Yourself."

The book asks and answers:

  • How can we create sustainable and effective ministries to serve poor people?
  • How can we shift our well-intended efforts from creating unintended dependency to fostering true empowerment?
  • What are the common pitfalls of poverty alleviation and how can we avoid them?
  • Where does "making disciples" fit into all of this?

The book provides an alternative to typical approaches to alleviating poverty.

The seminar is co-sponsored by the Bartlesville and Tulsa Districts. It also has been endorsed by the Conference’s Discipleship Ministry Team, Criminal Justice & Mercy Ministries (CJAMM), and Mission & Service Ministry Team; by The Education & Employment Ministry (TEEM) in Oklahoma City; by Restore Hope Ministries in Tulsa; by First UMC in Tulsa; and by Conference leaders Craig Stinson, Joe Harris, Jeremy Bassett, and Diana Northcutt.

On Oct. 5, sign-in begins at 8:30 a.m. at Boston Avenue Church. Sessions are from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. An optional, free session at 4:15-5:15 p.m. is titled "Sustainable Economic Development Strategies at Home & Abroad."

Register online at www.chalmers.org/events.  Cost, $45, includes lunch. College/seminary students receive a $5 discount.


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