What is evangelicaladvocacy.org?

Evangelicaladvocacy.org is an online open source curriculum resource geared towards evangelical scholars, students, and any other interested parties trying to prayerfully and scripturally make sense of whether and how to engage government around the issue of global poverty.  We hope that this wide collection of diverse materials will be useful for a variety of purposes, including creating courses and workshops,  and fostering dialogue, discussion and engagement around evangelical and global poverty advocacy, especially related to U.S. government assistance.

Background:

An historic dialogue in 2010 between evangelical leaders from relief & development, church mission, advocacy, academics and media hosted at Wheaton College inspired the development of this website.  The consultation sought to strengthen the understanding of how evangelical Christians approach government and God’s mission in the world.  An evangelical declaration entitled Government, Global Poverty and God’s Mission in the World resulted from the consultation’s dialogue.

Who is behind this website?

In 2011, Asbury Seminary’s E. Stanley Jones School for World Mission and Evangelism, Bread for the World Institute and Eastern University’s School of Leadership and Development came together to examine the connection between evangelical advocacy and U.S. foreign assistance, specifically with the purpose of intellectually informing and equipping those exploring this topic within evangelical higher education circles.  This partnership brought together a depth of experience and expertise from these three diverse institutions to focus on the critical, related issues of global poverty and advocacy in our time.

Asbury Theological Seminary is an evangelical seminary steeped in the Wesleyan tradition and offers one of the few Ph.D. programs on development studies available in the United States. Eastern University’s School of Leadership & Development, rooted in the intersection of evangelism and social change, offers an MBA in Economic Development and an MA in International Development which for over 25 years has produced alumni working all over the world with evangelical relief and development organizations, mission agencies, and churches. Bread for the World Institute is a Christian hunger and poverty education and analysis organization. Its leader, Rev. David Beckmann, was the 2010 World Food Prize laureate.

How is the material structured?

The website is organized into four distinct but related modules that can either be used separately or together.  Each module includes a robust exploration of the important topics, contentious questions, and key scholarly and expert resources.  Resources include papers and presentations, media files, extensive bibliographies, and relevant class syllabi from various evangelical educational institutions.

Four Modules:

  1. A Theology of Poverty in Today’s World
    Biblical and theological resources in this module explore from an evangelical perspective what it means to “remember the poor” (Galatians 2:10), and what God thinks about poverty.
  2. Christians Engaging Government
    Resources in this module show how some evangelicals engage government in light of Romans 13, including how giants of the faith, like Calvin, Wesley, and Wilberforce, interfaced with government systems and structures in the past.
  3. Government Initiatives Against Global Poverty
    Resources in this module highlight the nature of government foreign assistance, its role in fighting global poverty, and the interface that evangelical organizations have with it.
  4. Advocacy on US Government Foreign Assistance
    Resources in this module explore ways that evangelical Christians can influence the policies governing foreign assistance around the world by developing a biblical approach to advocacy.

How can material be added:

We want to continue integrating new materials and resources into this clearinghouse. If you have a resource to incorporate, or any other insights or suggestions, please contact David Bronkema, the Director of International Development at Eastern University, dbronkem@eastern.edu.