Binding a Neighborhood Together

One of the difficulties in building a hopeful neighborhood is that most neighborhoods are divided by skin color, economic level, culture, language, religion, and other factors. Your neighborhood probably is, too. And it’s hard to get things done when people don’t communicate or trust each other across those lines.

This was something I faced when we were trying to combine two groups of people into a single church. On the one hand we had a dwindling group of elderly people, almost all White, who spoke English and were life-long Lutherans born in America. There were about thirty of them. On the other hand, we had a large and growing group of Vietnamese refugees of all ages, many of whom spoke little English and who were either new Christians or not Christian at all yet. We had about a hundred of them including the children.