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Our worship planning process at First Christian Church of Oakland (FCCO) might be described as “Paulo Freire meets Bible boot camp.” I’ve been at FCCO about five years now, and it took me a year to realize that the members of the congregation who had attended Bible study and Sunday school faithfully were just as unlikely to know the narrative arc of the Bible as were the people who were brand new to Christianity. And as much as I love the ecumenical commitment of the lectionary, as much as I love the way it pushes pastors past their favorite passages, I came to believe that it was failing my people.
This is an excerpt from an essay in Renew 52: 50+ Ideas to Revitalize Your Congregation from Leaders under 50. Download the e-book for free.
Sandhya Jha serves as co-pastor of First Christian Church of Oakland and also as director of the Oakland Peace Center. She recently published Room at the
Table: The Struggle for Dignity and Unity in Disciples History, a book about people of color in the Christian Church (Disciples of Christ). Her passions are Jesus,
jazz music, and Indian food (sometimes in that order).
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