USC Dornsife College Of Letters Arts and Sciences

University of Southern California

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.

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“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”