Economic inequality is both a social issue that people of faith feel called to address and a reality that shapes religious communities. In CRCC’s research in Los Angeles and across the globe, we’ve documented the appeal of Pentecostalism, with its message of healing, among people living in poverty. We’ve witnessed the selfless service of Catholic nuns in African slums, as well as the desire of religious “nones” to find meaning in their efforts to help the poor in their own backyard. In its relationship to economic inequality, religion can either be the “opiate of the people” or the agent of social change.
- ResourcesHow to Start a Wealth-Building Ministry at Your ChurchIn disadvantaged communities, economic instability makes it difficult for many to access important financial knowledge. Without this information, people cannot lift themselves up and grow their wealth. And if the people are …Topics: Black Church, CMCCE, Economic Inequality, Social Services
- ToolsNational Association of Real Estate Brokers (NAREB) Religious Literacy Primer 2019The USC Cecil Murray Center for Community Engagement created this religious literacy primer for the National Association of Real Estate Brokers (NAREB), in an effort to help members of the organization engage …Topics: Black Church, CMCCE, Economic Inequality, Tools, weforum
- CRCC in the NewsLAist: Loskota on Congregations Addressing HomelessnessA Los Angeles-area non-profit has been unsuccessful in opening congregations’ parking lots to people living out of their cars, reports KPCC/LAist. CRCC Executive Director Brie Loskota told KPCC that the expectations on …Topics: Economic Inequality, Social Services, Southern California
- CommentaryThe Poor People’s Campaign: Learning from the Global Fight Against Structural PovertyLast fall, I attended a high-energy mass meeting for the new Poor People’s Campaign. Part of a 15-state tour, the Los Angeles event rallied a racially mixed and enthusiastic crowd from the …Topics: Economic Inequality, Interfaith/Multifaith Movements, Political Attitudes and Values, Religious Leadership
- CommentaryAs King Encouraged, America Must Face Her FlawsThis post originally appeared in the Los Angeles Sentinel. In Dr. Martin Luther King’s posthumously published essay, “A Testament of Hope,” he wrote, “It is forcing America to face all its interrelated …Topics: Black Church, CMCCE, Economic Inequality, Gender, Race and Culture, Religious Leadership
- EventThe Memo Book Signing with John Hope BryantJohn Hope Bryant, founder of Operation HOPE, visited the USC Cecil Murray Center for Community Engagement for a book discussion and signing about his new book, The Memo: Five Rules for Your …Topics: CMCCE, Economic Inequality,
- VideoFaith Leaders on Los Angeles’ Homelessness Crisis
- VideoTrust Talks: A Dialogue on Police and Race in Los Angeles
- VideoCatholic Sisters: Champions of Sustainable Development
- BookIf I Give My Soul: Faith Behind Bars in Rio de JaneiroIf I Give My Soul: Faith Behind Bars in Rio de Janeiro By Andrew Johnson (Oxford University Press, 2017) The writing of this book was supported by the Pentecostal Charismatic Research Initiative. …Topics: Books, Christians and Christianity, Criminal Justice, Economic Inequality, Latin America, Pentecostals and Pentecostalism, Religious Beliefs and Rituals
- CommentaryHow to Handle Church Rip-Off Artists – Church Finance SeriesThis article originally appeared in The Christian Recorder. In bad economic times, churches are the target of professional con artists committed to ripping the church off. Some rip off artists hit 50 …Topics: Black Church, Christians and Christianity, CMCCE, Economic Inequality, Faith-Based Organizations, Religious Leadership, Social Services
- VideoCatholic Sisters Create a Model of Economic Empowerment in Zambia
“When people ask me, ‘What good can come out of Skid Row?’ I tell them that the people of God come out of Skid Row!”
—Pastor Cue of The Row/Church Without Walls
“Downtown L.A. Captures Pentecostalism’s Past, Present and Future”
To schedule an interview with one of our experts, please contact CRCC:
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- Brad ChristersonContributing FellowBrad Christenson is a sociologist who has written extensively in the areas of religion, race, ethnicity, and globalization.
- Rev. Frank Jackson, Jr.Contributing FellowRev. Frank Jackson, Jr. couples his experience in business and investment with his passion for community development.
- Andrew JohnsonPast FellowAndrew Johnson is a sociologist who studies religion on the margins of society, with specific interests in religious practice inside of prison, Latin American Pentecostalism and religion in the city.
- Cecil L. MurrayUniversity FellowRev. Cecil Murray works to ensure that the legacy of African American Church leaders pass on their years of experience to the next generation.
- Rebecca SagerContributing FellowRebecca Sager’s work focuses on political and religious movements and parties in American political life.
- Megan SweasEditor and Director of CommunicationsMegan Sweas is a journalist specializing in social and economic justice issues and world religions.