Our Christian faith invites each of us and our faith communities to become agents of God’s compassion and healing in a wounded world. Poverty is a human rights issue with grave impact on women and children. Written by Dr. Jack A. Keller, with chapter contributions by other selected writers, this mission study on poverty is designed to help participants recognize and claim for themselves the connections between Scripture, church tradition, compassion for the poor, social outreach, and social justice.
As cited by Dr. Pamela Couture in her chapter on Poverty in the U.S.A., Biblical passages have reminded Christians of their responsibility for poverty; the Wesleyan movement embraced this concern by creating community centers where destitute people could access education, medical care or employment; members of United Methodist Women and its predecessor organizations have continued this heritage and have documented poverty and responded to the poor where they exist.
Other chapters will address the themes of:

Are we avoiding or encountering the poor?
Biblical witness and our United Methodist Heritage
Global poverty
How can we support the efforts of impoverished people to help themselves (i. e Fair trade and micro finance, especially for women) as well as work to change the global policies that impact their lives daily?
Consumerism and spiritual poverty
Charity vs. justice and advocacy

Stories of those living in poverty and multiple and diverse examples of encounters between middle-class Christians and the poor are woven throughout the study.

Participants in the study will engage in deepening their understanding of the realities of poverty and be invited to commit to solidarity with the poor through accompaniment and advocacy.

Available Resources


The Girl Under the Bridge coverThe Girl under the Bridge:
Stories of Poverty and Hope for Children

This children’s study introduces children to the systemic issues of poverty and will help them develop caring hearts and justice-seeking spirits. Through five sessions, as well as a sixth intergenerational session, the study encourages participants to remove barriers between the "haves" and the "have-nots" and consider what changes we can make to reduce poverty in the United States and around the world.



Leader's GuidePDF: Portable Document File

The Leader’s Guide for the Poverty mission study is designed to help leaders explore  the issues of poverty as outlined in the study text . The guide offers ways individuals, small groups and congregations can be in ministry with and on behalf of people living in poverty.


Standing in Need: Systemic Poverty in Our Midst


A DVD offering real-life stories of people experiencing poverty and the way communities can stand with those in need. 

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