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“Restore us, O Lord God of hosts; let your face shine.” — Psalm 80:19

Church Growth and Transformation
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Ray Jones
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Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.)

Research Services
Research Services has developed a “Church Home Improvement Toolbox”, which is a variety of "do-it-yourself" research strategies for positive church improvement.

Multicultural Congregational Support
The ministry works to help the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.)’s efforts in becoming a multiracial, multilingual and multicultural community of faith and empower congregations and governing bodies.

The Office of Public Witness
The Office of Public Witness is the public policy information and advocacy office of the General Assembly of the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.). Its task is to advocate, and help the church to advocate, the social witness perspectives and policies of the Presbyterian General Assembly.

Small church ministry websites

Alban Institute
The ministry of the Institute is focused on support and strengthening of congregations.  They offer training events, consulting services and written resources.  They also provides scholarship funds to assist smaller membership congregations with limited means to send one or more people to an Alban Institute learning event. For more information, contact the Alban Institute Education Department about its scholarship program at (800) 486-1318.

Center for Ministry in Small Churches
An Episcopal Web site formed to offer clergy and laity a comprehensive and practical cooperative experience in small church ministry and management.

Operation Insamuch
This organization provides training to help congregations develop community ministries.

Presbyterians for Renewal Wee Kirk Ministry
The Wee Kirk ministry is intended to strengthen and support smaller membership churches witnin the PC(USA). 

Village Missions Center for Leadership Development
The Center desires to be a resource center for small church leaders. The information listed includes helpful web sites and other various resources available for small churches and ministries.

Rural church ministry


Appalachian Ministries Educational Resource Center
The Appalachian Ministries Educational Resource Center in Berea, Ky., promotes experiential learning for theological students, faculty and church leaders.

Center for Rural Affairs
The Center for Rural Affairs, a private nonprofit organization in Walthill, Neb., works to strengthen small businesses, family farms and ranches and rural communities.

Center for Theology and Land
The Center, located in Iowa, strengthens rural churches and communities by providing resources, training and continuing education courses for ministers.

Eyes on the Rural Church
This Web site acts as a place to exchange resources and pose questions related to rural church issues.

Federation of Southern Cooperatives
The federation, located in East Point, Ga., works toward the development of self-supporting communities with programs that increase income and enhance other opportunities in poor areas across the South.

Hinton Rural Life Center
This United Methodist site works to advocate for small membership churches within the community and provides opportunities for missional involvement.

Institute for Agriculture and Trade Policy
The Institute promotes resilient family farms, rural communities and ecosystems around the world through research and education, science and technology and advocacy.

Missouri School or Religion Center for Rural Ministry
The Center provides transforming experiences of leader development, ministerial preparation and continuing education, with concern for small and rural churches and communities.

National Catholic Rural Life Conference
This organization in Des Moines, Iowa, is a membership organization grounded in a spiritual tradition that brings together the Church, care of community and care of creation.

National Family Farm Coalition
The Washington, D.C.-based coalition provides a voice for grassroots groups on farm, food, trade and rural economic issues to ensure fair prices for family farmers, safe and healthy food, and vibrant, environmentally sound rural communities here and around the world.

National Farmers Union
The National Farmers Union in Denver, Colo., works to protect and enhance the economic well-being and quality of life for family farmers and ranchers and their rural communities.

Rural Coalition
This Washington, D.C.-based coalition promotes comprehensive food, farm, labor, immigration and trade policies in Congress to build a more equitable and sustainable food system for small and limited resource farmers and ranchers, farmworkers, rural communities, consumers and the environment.

Rural Information Center
The Web site provides services for rural communities, local officials, organizations, businesses and rural citizens working to maintain the vitality of America's rural areas.

Rural Ministry Resources and Networking, ELCA
This rural ministry site is part of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America and includes information on ministry, advocacy issues and ELCA policy documents.

United Methodist Rural Fellowship
The fellowship works to advocate, educate, inspire and influence the United Methodist Church around rural issues.

U.S. Department of Agriculture
The site provides information about rural and community development, as well as agriculture and other farm-related subjects.

Western Organization of Resource Councils
This regional network, based in Billings, Mont., helps its members with training and coordinating issue work in Dakota, Idaho, the northern plains area, Oregon, western Colorado and Powder River Basin area.

Urban church ministry

Metro-Urban Institute, Pittsburgh Theological Seminary
This site helps churches address growing concerns related to urban living and provides information about degree programs, urban ministry and cross-cultural issues.

SCUPE (Seminary Consortium for Urban Pastoral Education)
The Scupe organization helps develop church and community leaders and provides consultation and educational resources for individuals, educational institutions, churches and agencies that seek to enhance the spiritual, social and physical quality of life for city dwellers.

The Urban Institute — Outcome Indicators Project
The Urban Institute and the Center for What Works have developed common outcomes indicators that provide frameworks to help standardize approaches to nonprofit performance measurement. Housing is one of 14 program areas covered.

U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD)
HUD’s first Annual Homeless Report to Congress presents date on sheltered and unsheltered homeless people and on the national supply of emergency, temporary and permanent housing for them. Rural and suburban data are combined in the analysis.  HUD’s estimate of 704,000 people homeless on a single night is similar to the recent National Alliance to End Homelessness estimate.

Church development

The Barna Group
The Barna Group works to partner with Christian ministries and individuals to be a catalyst in moral and spiritual transformation in the United States by providing vision, information, evaluation and resources.

Congregational Resource Guide
This organization works to help congregational leaders connect with resources that will enable them to face challenges and foster vitality in their communities of faith.

Evangelism Connections
The new Evangelism Connections Web site is a consortium of denominations and their evangelism staff. You will find resources by the partner denominations, articles on doing evangelism and other helpful information to support your congregation’s evangelism ministry.

Faith and Justice Churches
This congregational network sponsored by Sojourners/Call to Renewal that operates as a gathering point for faith leaders to work together on social justice issues and provides tools to help local churches put faith into action.

Hartford Institute for Religion Research
This research organization gathers information to create a public profile of the heart and soul of religion in America — local congregations — and assist congregational leaders in the effective use of this research to improve their ministries.

Louisville Institute
This institute is a Lilly Endowment program that seeks to enrich the religious life of American Christians and to encourage the revitalization of their institutions.

Net Results
A website with information, news, events and workshops for ministry.

Partners for Sacred Places
An organization working for sound stewardship and active community use of America's older religious properties.

Resources for American Christianity
This web site seeks to assist leaders and participants in Christian communities, scholars and other interested publics in better understanding the impact, trends and trajectories of Christianity in American society by providing information and reflection on selected projects funded by the Lilly Endowment Inc.

Web of Creation
An organization providing resources for personal and social transformation from religious perspectives.

Congregations-based/community-based community organizing

Center for Community Change
The organization works to help establish and develop community organizations across the country, "bring attention to major national issues related to poverty," and "help insure that government programs are responsive to community needs."

Center for New Community
This organization works with communities, organizations, coalitions and congregations that share a vision of a democratic future based on human rights, justice and equality.

Center for Third World Organizing
A racial-justice organization dedicated to building a social-justice movement led by people of color.

Direct Action and Research Training (DART)
A training center committed to building powerful, diverse, congregation-based and democratically run organizations capable of winning justice on issues facing the community.

Gamaliel Foundation
A network of 60 affiliates in 21 states across the United States and five provinces of South Africa represents multi-faith, multi-racial church-going people who work on social justice campaigns.

Industrial Areas Foundation
A social change foundation working to build a political base of religious congregations, labor locals, homeowner groups, recovery groups, parents associations, settlement houses, immigrant societies, schools, seminaries and religious orders.

Interfaith Funders
A network of faith-based and secular grantmakers committed to support congregation-based community organizing.

InterValley Project
A New England organizing network working with religious, labor and community leaders.

Institute of Cultural Affairs
This organization promotes positive change in communities, organizations, and individual lives.

Midwest Academy
The academy teaches an organizing philosophy, methods and skills that enable ordinary people to actively participate in the democratic process.

PICO National Network
A national network of faith-based community organizations working to create innovative solutions to problems facing urban, suburban and rural communities.

Regional Congregations and Neighborhood Organizations
A Philadelphia based organization that instructs clergy and lay persons in the art of community organizing, public policy formation and program development.

Western Organization of Resources Councils
WORC’s mission is to advance the vision of a democratic, sustainable, and just society through community action and is committed to building sustainable environmental and economic communities that balance economic growth with the health of people and stewardship of their land, water, and air resources.