Homing: A Call to Christian Hospitality in the 21st Century
Churches across America are responding to the growing need for affordable housing by expanding their ministries of hospitality to provide homes on their sites. In large urban settings some are taking dramatic steps to build high-rise apartments hosting more than 100 dwellings. There is a genuine desire in many small and medium sized churches in small cities and towns to find a way to get involved. But they often don’t know how to start.
Thanks to a grant from the Louisville Institute, I plan to spend 18 months in 2024 - 2025 researching and documenting up to ten of these smaller churches that have found a way to be creative with what they have in order to host affordable housing. Collaborating with municipalities and non-profits, attracting individuals with passion and skill, listening deeply to the needs and desires of those experiencing homelessness, these churches are developing small solutions that make big differences in individual lives.
I want to find out how those projects came to be, how they have been funded, how they work, and how they have affected the people they serve and the people providing the hospitality. I want to learn about the obstacles as well as avenues of support from individuals, non-profits, municipalities, and ecclesial authorities. I want to hear the stories of creative problem-solving, discouragement, perseverance, and success. I want to share the experience of the Advocate and Pee Wee Homes in Chapel Hill, NC. And I want to serve as a conduit for these experiences to be shared and to inspire.