World of Hurt, Word of Life: “Renewing God’s Communion in the Work of Economic Reconstruction”

Responding to the deepening economic crisis of our times, the 219th General Assembly (2010) recognized a preliminary statement of concern, Living Through Economic Crisis: The Church’s Witness in Troubled Times (Minutes, 2010, Part I, pp. 733ff of electronic copy; pp.323–24 of the print copy), and proceeded to authorize further study of the problem with recommendations for faithful action by the church. Specifically, the General Assembly asked for a study that “assesses the long-term implications of our current economic trends and practices, including their impact on the church itself, and provides appropriate recommendations for consideration by members, congregations, presbyteries, and local, state, and federal government” (Ibid., p. 733 of the electronic copy, p. 323 of the print copy).

In consultation with a broad range of experts and practitioners who work on economic policy and development, a study team appointed by the Advisory Committee on Social Witness Policy carried out this work. In addition to this report, the study team prepared supplemental discussion essays and other related materials, which will be made available on line before the 220th General Assembly (2012). A number of resources can already be found in the October 2011 issue of Unbound (, titled “The Dark Night of the American Economy” ( Unbound is an interactive, online journal and the official successor to Church & Society magazine.

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