Sunday, June 17, 2007

lessons about neighborhood

recently, geoff and i had the pleasure of meeting a professor at whitley college of divinity in melbourne named simon carey holt. he teaches spirituality and practical theology. on the side he's a chef, husband and father. he's just published a book, "god next door: spirituality & mission in the neigbourhood." it is an excellent book and we highly recommend it (although i'm not certain if it is available outside oz). from it we are learning alot as he is providing us with a well-researched, well-thought out missional and theological framework for the way we live in our neighborhoods, with our neighbors. in reading it, we can't help but think of the faithfulness of our friends in communality who are occupying places in lexington with a hope and life that seeks the shalom and well-being of the city.

here is an excerpt in which simon summaries the spirituality of neighborliness in scripture:

1. love of god and love of neighbour are a package

2. to love the neighbour is to act justly, compassionately and selflessly

3. real neighborliness is inclusive and offered without prejudice

4. the neighbourhood is a place of god's presence

5. the neighbourhood is an important place of ministry

6. neighbourliness and neighbourhood continue to have an important connection (the primacy of our most imediate environments)

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