Congress on Urban Ministry

2014 Congress On Urban Ministry - Building a Just Economy

“Christians engaged in and passionate about transformative urban ministry who attend will find this event to be the single most inclusive gathering of resources for ministry the city.”

- Past Conference Participant

We need your voice, your passion, your energy and your commitment.

The unprecedented level of wealth inequality today is an offense to our faith. This year’s Congress on Urban Ministry will create a platform for churches, community organizations, political and business leaders to strategize together on how to address this growing problem.

Inspiring preachers will help us re-root ourselves in the “good news to the poor.”

For political and sociological analysis we’ll have:

Cornel West speaking at the 1994 Congress on Urban MinistryEquipping workshops led by some of the most cutting edge thinkers in urban ministry, community organizing, theology, and economics will examine the many facets of the problem, and provide practical tools of engagement. The workshop learning tracks include:

  • Mass Incarceration and the Destruction of Our Communities
  • Immigration Policy and Poverty
  • Corporatization of the Common Good
  • Organizing Religious Communities for Political Action
  • Re-reading Sacred Texts from the Lens of Economic Justice
  • Gender and Economic Justice
  • Eco Justice and Faith Communities
  • Utilizing the Media for Social Justice

Networking opportunities with 400 or more other religious and community leaders in what a previous Congress participant called “the single most inclusive gathering of resources for ministry in the city.”

Together Building a Just Economy requires all of working together. The Congress will help create a moral vocabulary for public discourse, and a platform for organizing that could change the way we organize our common-wealth.

You can’t afford not to be a part of this gathering.

2014 Congress on Urban Ministry:
Together Building a Just Economy

June 23-26, 2014
Chicago, IL

2014 Congress on Urban Ministry

SCUPE’s Congress on Urban Ministry has been one of the leading urban ministry conferences for the past 36 years, featuring top notch speakers, artists, and workshops all focused on one of the most important issues for faith in the city.  This year’s conference will place SCUPE along with Interfaith Worker Justice at the center of the global economic justice conversation and continues to demonstrate our leadership in the field of Urban Ministry and Social Justice.

The 2014 Congress will to model partnership, cooperation, and innovative approaches to contemporary urban challenges facing our cities here at home and abroad.  It is our goal to empower leaders by giving them the theological grounding for action, training them in the tools of organizing, and inspiring them to think systemically about the economic justice issues in their communities and networks.

The overlapping IWJ and SCUPE conferences will take place in Chicago, IL from Monday evening, June 23rd through Tuesday afternoon, June 24th.

Both conferences will be held at:

DePaul University
Student Center
2250 N. Sheffield
Chicago, IL 60614

Bishop Philip Robert Cousin speaking at the 2006 Congress on Urban MinistryOne area key to revitalization of urban churches is their engagement with their communities.In this time of declining wages, lack of decent work, mass incarceration, issues around immigration, the theme of the 2014 Congress on Urban Ministry: “Together Building a Just Economy”, will be of utmost importance to church revitalization.
Emerging from the worst U.S. recession since the Great Depression, the church in the city still itself on the frontlines of a crisis.Our neighborhoods have taken the brunt of cuts in public funding to public schools and libraries and the slashing of crucial social services like shelters for the homeless and mental health clinics. Our community leaders have seen retirees face cuts in their pensions; heard the stories of home-owners who owe more on their mortgage than their home is now worth; and celebrated with students graduating from college even as they scavenge through a dire job market while burdened with tens of thousands of dollars in student loan debt.
Increasingly, the order of the day seems to be extravagant opulence for a tiny, ever-shrinking minority and scarcity, anxiety, and insecurity regarding life’s most basic needs for the-rest-of-us.

Dr. Walter Brueggemann speaking at the 2011 Congress on Urban Ministry

Dr. Walter Brueggemann speaking at the 2011 Congress on Urban Ministry

SCUPE’s 2014 Congress on Urban Ministry will be a crucial place for community leaders to come together to Build a Just Economy.The 2014 Congress will EQUIP you to:

  • FIGHT the systems that create poverty
  • CONFRONT economic violence with the GOSPEL
  • Develop ways to STRENGTHEN urban families
  • Give and receive care and support for your CALLING
  • EMPOWER urban ministers for their work
  • Strategize for the FUTURE of churches and cities
  • Find PARTNERS and MENTORS for your ministry
  • REJOICE in what GOD has done in the city

Who Should Attend the 2014 Congress on Urban Ministry?

The Congress on Urban Ministry fosters a unique blend of dialogue and collaboration between people based in varying geographical locations, varying perspectives, ethnicities, and backgrounds who represent varying theological commitments and varying strategic approaches to working in urban communities.

The Congress will serve:

  • Pastors
  • Seminary and college students
  • Church leaders
  • Community organizers
  • Youth directors
  • Non-profit leaders
  • Activists
  • Theologians
  • Community development practitioners
  • Public policy advocates
  • Human services personnel
  • Ordained and lay people
  • Urban ministers
  • Labor advocates
  • And many others…

The Congress on Urban Ministry is one of a rare breed of conferences that strives to wed faith with practice through a dynamic range of plenary speakers, sacred-text leaders, workshop presentations, worship experiences, various networking events, site visits, and a public action. There will be opportunities for attendees to participate in art and music offerings, prayer and reflection, as well as informal discussions with the presenters and the grassroots practitioners who make a real impact in their communities everyday.

The Congress on Urban Ministry is a biennial event organized by SCUPE in partnership with organizations, agencies, and denominations doing urban ministry. Over its 30 year history the Congress has proven itself as a premier, international gathering of hundreds of pastors, practitioners, academicians, students and people with a passion for social justice who come together to take part in educating, celebrating, and collaborating towards God’s reign in our cities. This diverse group of participants is committed to finding creative ways to prepare and resource individuals so that their ministries may better confront the issues and needs of their communities.

The 2014 Congress on Urban Ministry will convene June 23-26 at DePaul University in Chicago. Christians engaged in and passionate about transformational urban ministry who attend will find this event to be the single most inclusive gathering of resources for ministry in the city.

SCUPE’s Congress hosts a truly incredible list of nationally renowned speakers as well various networking events, evening worship, site visits, and social actions that put theory into practice. There will also be opportunities for attendees to participate in art, prayer, concerts, and informal discussions with the presenters and the grassroots practitioners who make a real impact in their communities everyday.

Attendees will have the opportunity to be challenged and inspired from nearly 50 workshops focusing on such topics as: asset-based community development, resisting economic violence, peacemaking with urban youth, restoring urban communities, faith-based public policy advocacy, urban & suburban partnerships, time-banking, immigration theology, hip-hop as a theological paradigm, and ecological peacemaking.

2014 Congress on Urban Ministry: "Together Building a Just Economy"

Our theme Together, Building a Just Economy is compelling and timely and will provide for amble breadth to shape a conference for clergy, theologians, and activists that will equip and empower professionals to be effective leaders in the midst of our current global economic environment.

The 2014 Congress on Urban Ministry will focus on  Isaiah Chapter 58 as our biblical text. The text builds well on the theme of economic justice while calling on mutual scriptures shared in both the Christian and Jewish traditions.  The text includes these verses:

Shout out, do not hold back!…
Look, you serve your own interest
on your fast day,
and oppress all your workers…
Such fasting as you do today
will not make your voice heard on high…Is not the fast that I choose:
to loose the bonds of injustice,
to undo the thongs of the yoke,
to let the oppressed go free?…
If you remove the yoke from among you…
Then your light shall rise in the darkness.

Rev. Dr. Otis Moss IIIRev. Dr. Otis Moss III
Trinity United Church of Christ
Chicago, Illinois
Ph.D. University of Denver & the Iliff School of Theology

Rev. Dr. Otis Moss III is part of a new generation of ministers committed to preaching prophetically that the message of love and justice are inseparable companions, forming the foundation of the Gospel of Jesus Christ. He has a unique gift to communicate across generations. His creative bible-based messages have inspired young and old alike. His intergenerational preaching gift has made Rev. Moss a popular speaker on college campuses, at conferences and churches across the globe. Rev. Moss is a native of Cleveland, OH, an honors graduate of Morehouse College, Yale Divinity School, and he has earned a Doctor of Ministry degree from Chicago Theological Seminary.

Rev. Moss is highly influenced by the works of Zora Neale Hurston, August Wilson, Howard Thurman, Jazz and Hip-Hop music. The work and legacy of Dr, Martin Luther King, Jr., and the pastoral ministry of his father, Dr. Otis Moss, Jr. of Cleveland, OH, have been primary mentors for his spiritual formation.

He is the former pastor of the Tabernacle Baptist Church in Augusta, GA., his first pastorate, where the church grew from 125 members to over 2100 disciples during his tenure. Rev. Moss is currently Senior Pastor of Trinity United Church of Christ in Chicago, IL.

Slessarev-Jamir_HiRez_(resize)Dr. Helene Slessarev-Jamir
Claremont School of Theology
Claremont, California
Ph.D. University of Chicago

Dr. Helene Slessarev-Jamir has been a long-time friend of SCUPE’s serving on several National Planning Committees and as Co-Chair of the 2002 Congress.  Her most recent book Prophetic Activism explores in some depth the dynamic relationship between justice movements, social change, and the formation of theological circles of thought.  While at Claremeont School of Theology she is currently researching the character of religiously inspired justice work in response to globalization and American empire. She is working on a book on contemporary progressive prophetic activism in the United States that will include chapters on congregational community organizing, activism in support of worker justice, immigrant rights, peace-making, and ending global poverty.

Her earlier work includes reports on national promising practices in community-based ministry among Asian and Hispanic immigrant religious communities published by the Annie-E. Casey Foundation She has also written articles on congregational based community organizing and the role of public theology in an age of empire. She has an extensive background doing community-based consulting work and worked as a union and community organizer in Washington D.C. and Chicago prior to going to graduate school.

She is currently a member of the Board of Directors of Sojourners and serves on the United Methodist Church’s National Committee for Hispanic/Latino Ministry and its National Immigration Task Force.

Rev. Paul SherryRev. Dr. Paul Sherry
Interfaith Worker Justice
President of the Board
Cleveland, OH
Ph.D. Union Theological Seminary

From October, 2010 through June 2012, The Rev. Dr. Paul H. Sherry joined the staff of Interfaith Worker Justice. Working out of IWJ’s Washington DC office, he spearheaded IWJ’s work on the current unemployment crisis.  Dr. Sherry was the President of the United Church of Christ from 1989 to 1999.  From 2000 to 2005 he served as a consultant to the Center for Community Change and from 2003 to 2007 as the Coordinator of the Anti-Poverty Program of the National Council of Churches. During that same period he was the Executive Director of the Let Justice Roll Living Wage Campaign.  Sherry was the Executive Director of Chicago’s Community Renewal Society from 1982 until 1989.

Dr. Sherry earned a B.A. degree (1955) from Franklin and Marshall College, Lancaster, Pa. and an M.Div. (1958) and a Ph.D. in theology (1969) from Union Theological Seminary, New York City.  He is married to Mary Louise Thornburg.  They have two children and four grandchildren.

Rev. Dr. Otis Moss IIIRev. Dr. Otis Moss III

Prophetic Preacher – Senior Pastor, Trinity United Church of Christ

The senior pastor of Trinity United Church of Christ in Chicago, Rev. Moss is in the forefront of a new generation of ministers committed to preaching prophetically that love and justice are inseparable and are foundational to the Gospel of Jesus Christ. His intergenerational preaching gift has made Rev. Moss a popular speaker on college campuses, at conferences and churches across the globe.

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Dr. Helene Slessarev-JamirDr. Helene Slessarev-Jamir

Professor of Urban Ministry – Claremont School of Theology

Professor of Urban Ministry at Claremont School of Theology, Dr. Slassarev-Jamir is researching the character of faith-based justice work. Her most recent book Prophetic Activism explores in some depth the dynamic relationship between justice movements, social change, and the formation of theological circles of thought.  She has an extensive background in union and community organizing in Washington D.C. and Chicago.

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Rev. Dr. Allan BoesakRev. Dr. Allan Boesak

South African Anti-Apartheid Activist & Liberation Theologian

An internationally known South African liberation theologian Dr. Boesak serves as the Desmond Tutu Chair for Peace, Global Justice, and Reconciliation Studies at Butler University and Christian Theological Seminary in Indianapolis. He rose to prominence in 1982, when the World Alliance of Reformed Churches declared the doctrine of apartheid a heresy, suspended the South African Reformed Churches from its membership and elected him president of the world body. Dr. Boesak was a co-founder of the United Democratic Front (UDF) and its struggle to end the government enforced racism.  He has authored many books including his forthcoming Dare We Speak of Hope: Searching for a Language of Life in Faith and Politics.

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Sister Simone CampbellSister Simone Campbell

Nuns on the Bus – Executive Director of Network

A religious leader, attorney and poet with extensive experience in public policy and advocacy, Sister Simone is a noted speaker on issues of peace-building, immigration reform, healthcare and economic justice. During the 2010 congressional debate about healthcare reform, she wrote the famous “nuns’ letter” supporting the bill and organized the “Nuns on the Bus” tour opposing the “Ryan Budget” which could have decimated programs meant to help people in need. She recently led a new cross-country “Nuns on the Bus” trip focused on comprehensive immigration reform.

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Bishop Sally DyckBishop Sally Dyck

Social Justice Advocate & United Methodist Church Bishop

As bishop of the United Methodist Church’s Northern Illinois Conference, Bishop Dyck established an Urban Strategy initiative that identifies programs that are already functioning in four key areas: Community Safety, Restorative Justice, Education and Literacy as well as Food Deserts. “My heart breaks for this city; the city that everyone loves so much and yet has such an underbelly of need, poverty, corruption, violence and fear. I feel called to empower the United Methodist Church to make a difference in Chicago so that it may be a place of peace for its children and communities.”

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Dr. Saskia SassenDr. Saskia Sassen

Urban Sociologist – Columbia University

The Robert S. Lynd Professor of Sociology at Columbia University, Prof. Sassen’s research and writing focuses on globalization (including social, economic and political dimensions), immigration, global cities (including cities and terrorism), the new technologies, and changes within the liberal state that result from current transnational conditions. In each of the three major projects that comprise her 20 years of research, Sassen starts with a thesis that posits the unexpected and the counterintuitive in order to cut through established “truths.”

҉2014 Congress on Urban Ministry is being organized in conjunction with Interfaith Worker Justice and their director Kim Bobo.Ms. Kim Bobo

Celebrated Author, Organizer, and Executive Director of Interfaith Worker Justice

Named one of Utne Reader’s “50 Visionaries Who Are Changing the World” in 2009, Ms. Kim Bobo helped coin the phrase “wage theft.” Her book Wage Theft in America helped get the issue on the national radar. Ms.Bobo founded Interfaith Worker Justice, a national network of more than 70 interfaith groups seeking to educate and organize support for improving working conditions of American workers. In 2012 she was honored with the Pacem in Terris Peace and Freedom Award (Previous awardees include Dorothy Day, Martin Luther King, Jr., Mother Teresa, Archbishop Desmond Tutu, and John Dear).

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Rev. Dr. Shanta PremawardhanaRev. Dr. Shanta Premawardhana

Interfaith Theologian – President, SCUPE

Rev. Dr. Shanta Premawardhana is president of SCUPE. A Baptist pastor from Sri Lanka, he was most recently the director for the Program Interreligious Dialogue and Cooperation at the World Council of Churches (WCC). Previously, Premawardhana served as the Associate General Secretary for Interfaith Relations at the National Council of Churches of Christ, based in New York. Following seminary education in Sri Lanka and India, Premawardhana arrived in the United States in 1981 for graduate study at Northwestern University in Evanston, Illinois, where he earned his M.A. and Ph.D, in Religion. Continuing to live in the Chicago area, he founded the Chicago Ashram of Jesus Christ, a Christian community with an outreach to South Asian immigrants from many cultural backgrounds and religious traditions and served for fourteen years as senior pastor of Ellis Avenue Church located in the south side of Chicago.

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Rev. Dr. Charles Amjad-AliRev. Dr. Charles Amjad-Ali

Ecumenical Theologian – Academic Dean, SCUPE

Rev. Charles Amjad-Ali, Ph.D., Th.D. was most recently the Martin Luther King, Jr. Chair of Justice and Christian Community, and Director of Islamic Studies at Luther Seminary, St. Paul, MN. He was the Desmond Tutu Chair of Ecumenical Theology and Social Transformation in Africa at the University of Western Cape in South Africa, during the summer of 2013. He is an ordained presbyter of the Church of Pakistan. He was the director of the Christian Study Center in Rawalpindi, Pakistan, which focused on Christian-Muslim dialogue, peace advocacy, and human rights work, from 1985 till 1995, the director of political education at the Aurat (Women) Foundation in Pakistan, in 1995-96, and was a founding member of the Human Rights Commission of Pakistan. He has a Ph.D. in Theology and Political Philosophy, from Princeton Theological Seminary, a post-doctoral certificate in Islamic Law and History from Columbia University, and has received a special honorary doctorate in theology from the University of Uppsala, Sweden, in 1995.

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Monday June 23, 2014

Registration is available from 8:00am to 4:30pm

5:45pm – 6:45pm        President’s Reception (Invitation Only)
7:00pm – 9:00pm        SCUPE Congress Opening and Evening Worship

Plenary: What if…

Rev. Dr. Allan Boesak

9:00pm – 10:30pm      Evening Entertainment – Music by JKwest and Stacy Ponds

 

Tuesday June 24, 2014

Registration is available from 8:00am to 4:30pm

7:30am – 8:30am         IWJ & SCUPE Regional Table Breakfast (included in registration)
8:30am – 9:15am         IWJ & SCUPE Sacred Text Study

Rev. Dr. Charles Amjad-Ali w/ Muslim & Jewish Leaders

9:15am – 9:30am         Break
9:30am – 10:45am       Workshop Session I

  • Mass Incarceration and the Destruction of Our Communities
  • Immigration Policy and Poverty
  • Corporatization of the Common Good
  • Organizing Religious Communities for Political Action
  • Re-reading Sacred Texts from the Lens of Economic Justice
  • Gender and Economic Justice
  • Eco Justice and Faith Communities
  • Utilizing the Media for Social Justice

10:45am – 11:00am    Break
11:00am – 12:30pm    IWJ & SCUPE Morning Plenary

Plenary: Walking Willingly on the Path of Saving Justice

Sister Simone Campbell

Call to Public Action

Led by Rev. Dr. Shanta Premawardhana & Ms. Kim Bobo

12:30pm – 12:45pm    Pick up Boxed Lunches (included in registration) & Go to Buses
12:45pm – 1:30pm      Buses Leave to ACTION Sites
1:30pm – 3:30pm        Public ACTION – off site
3:30pm – 4:00pm        Buses Return to DePaul University
4:00pm – 5:00pm        Public ACTION debrief

Led by Rev. Dr. Shanta Premawardhana & Ms. Kim Bobo

5:00pm – 7:00pm        Dinner (On your own)
7:00pm – 8:30pm        SCUPE Evening Worship

Plenary: Mass Incarceration & the Destruction of Our Communities

❹ Rev. Dr. Otis Moss III

8:45pm – 10:30pm      Evening Entertainment – Screening of Robert Reich’s documentary Inequality for All

 

Wednesday June 25, 2014

Registration is available from 8:00am to 4:30pm

7:30am – 8:30am         Breakfast (On your own)
8:00am – 8:45am         Sacred Text Study

Rev. Dr. Charles Amjad-Ali 

8:45am – 9:00am         Break
9:00am – 10:15am       Morning Plenary

Plenary: Global Economics and Alternate Economies

Dr. Saskia Sassen

10:15am –10:30am     Break
10:30am – 12:00pm    Workshop Session II

  • Mass Incarceration and the Destruction of Our Communities
  • Immigration Policy and Poverty
  • Corporatization of the Common Good
  • Organizing Religious Communities for Political Action
  • Re-reading Sacred Texts from the Lens of Economic Justice
  • Gender and Economic Justice
  • Eco Justice and Faith Communities
  • Utilizing the Media for Social Justice

12:00pm – 1:30pm    Lunch on your own
1:30p.m. – 2:45pm    Afternoon Plenary

Panel Plenary: Economic Justice through the Eyes of Women

❼ Moderated by Dr. Helene Slessarev-Jamir

  1. Ms. Myrla Baldonado, Organizer @ Chicago Coalition of Household Workers
  2. Ms. Elvira Carbajal, Organizer @ Farm Workers Association of Florida
  3. Ms. Laila Muhammad, Center Director @ ZAKAT Foundation Chicago
  4. Ms. Edith Watson, Program Director of Recovery @ Harmony, Hope, & Healing

2:45pm – 3:00pm        Break
3:00pm – 4:15pm        Workshop Session III

  • Mass Incarceration and the Destruction of Our Communities
  • Immigration Policy and Poverty
  • Corporatization of the Common Good
  • Organizing Religious Communities for Political Action
  • Re-reading Sacred Texts from the Lens of Economic Justice
  • Gender and Economic Justice
  • Eco Justice and Faith Communities
  • Utilizing the Media for Social Justice

4:30pm – 7:00pm        Dinner (On your own) | SCUPE Alumni Reception
7:00pm – 9:00pm        Evening Worship

Plenary: An Immigration Story

❽ Bishop Sally Dyck

8:45pm – 10:30pm      Evening Entertainment – Ethnic Line Dancing

 

Thursday June 26, 2014

7:00am – 8:00am         Breakfast (On your own)
8:00am – 8:45am         Sacred Text Study

Rev. Dr. Charles Amjad-Ali

8:45am – 9:00am         Break
9:00am – 10:15am       Workshop Session IV

  • Mass Incarceration and the Destruction of Our Communities
  • Immigration Policy and Poverty
  • Corporatization of the Common Good
  • Organizing Religious Communities for Political Action
  • Re-reading Sacred Texts from the Lens of Economic Justice
  • Gender and Economic Justice
  • Eco Justice and Faith Communities
  • Utilizing the Media for Social Justice

10:15am – 10:30am     Break
10:30am – 11:30am     Closing Worship

Plenary: “Moving from Talk to Action: Calling our Communities to Prophetic Activism”

❿ Dr. Helene Slessarev-Jamir

     Adjourn @ 11:30am sharp

11:45am – 12:00pm    Conference Closes

2014 SCUPE Congress on Urban Ministry

Registration Deadlines and Rates

*We are pleased to announce that Early Bird registration has been extended.  Register today and you will receive the Early Bird rate for the 2014 Congress on Urban Ministry.

These rates include a Regional Breakfast and a Boxed Lunch on Tuesday for the Public Action.  For an additional fee, affordable DePaul University dormitory accommodations and meal plans will be made available later during the registration process.

Registration for 2014 Congress on Urban Ministry

*We are pleased to announce that Early Bird registration has been extended.  Register today and you will receive the Early Bird rate for the 2014 Congress on Urban Ministry.

HOUSING

There are several housing options for those who need overnight accommodations during the Congress.

ON CAMPUS ACCOMODATIONS

The closet and most affordable option is staying at the Clifton-Fullerton Hall on DePaul’s campus.  This keeps you two blocks away from Congress activities at the DePaul Student Center.  See the campus map for the location of the residence hall and student center.

DePaul University Map

There is limited availability for these deeply discounted housing rates and rooms are expected to sell out.  The costs and room types are shown below:

  • Bed in a Single Room*/ Night: $120.00
  • Bed in a Double Room*/ Night: $65.00
  • Bed in a Triple Room*/ Night: $45.00

For those sharing a room, you can identify your roommate when you make a reservation.  You can purchase a stay for one, two or three nights during the Congress.

Book Now Button 3

Please be mindful that DePaul Residence Hall accommodations do not provide hotel-style services such as wake up calls, bed turn down or room service.  All rooms have shared bathrooms with an adjoining room.  Click here to see additional details of on campus accommodations.

HOTELS

SCUPE has negotiated room-rates at the following hotels which are relatively close to DePaul’s campus through the Chicago’s public transit system.

$229.00 + Tax/Fees
Use Seminary Consortium for Urban Pastoral Education (SCUPE) when booking.

Address:
350 West Mart Center Drive
Chicago, IL 60654

Call 855-268-0372 for reservations

  • DoubleTree Magnificent Mile (located 3 ½ blocks from the Grand stop on the Red line)

    $199.00 + Tax/Fees
    Use Seminary Consortium for Urban Pastoral Education (SCUPE) when booking.

    Address:
    300 East Ohio Street
    Chicago, IL 60611

    Call 312-787-6100 for reservations – release date is May 24th

In addition to these two options, which feature a negotiated room rate, there are a myriad of other excellent union hotels that we would recommend as alternatives.  You can see a comprehensive list of our suggestions here.

Transportation to and from both of these hotels is relatively easy through the city’s transportation grid.  Click here to get transportation information for the Congress location: DePaul University (Lincoln Park campus).

You will find a full listing of workshops here in PDF format.

The 2014 Congress on Urban Ministry will be home to an incredible offering of workshops on a wide-range of topics of concern to people of faith, urban congregations, social justice activists, theologians, and individuals committed to building a Just Economy.  Come ready to be informed, challenged, and equipped to sharpen your ministry and actively work for peace in your congregation, neighborhood, city, nation, and in your own spirituality.

The 45 workshops offered over the 3-and-a-half day conference are organized across four different workshop-sessions and thematically amongst the following eight tracks:

  • Mass Incarceration and the Destruction of Our Communities
  • Immigration and Public Policy
  • Corporatization of the Common Good
  • Organizing Religious Communities for Political Action
  • Re-reading Sacred Texts from the Lens of Economic Justice
  • Gender and Economic Justice
  • Eco Justice and Faith Communities
  • Utilizing the Media for Social Justice

Workshop at SCUPE's 2008 Congress on Urban Ministry.Workshops will generally be of the following three types: First will be educational workshops providing content and understanding.  Second, there will be equipping workshops which will provide the skills, resources and strategies that experienced church leaders and organizations use to transform their communities.  Third, there will be inspirational workshops that will focus on deepening our commitments and enlarging our vision.  Please look for more information about the Congress Workshops in the near future.

Though a complete workshop listing is still in the process of being finalized here are a couple examples of seven workshops and two site visits that will be offered at the 2014 Congress which may whet your appetite:

Detroit Jesus: Searching for Jesus in Occupied Detroit.

James W. Perkinson is a long-time activist/educator/artist living and working on Detroit’s near east side. He has written extensively on race, religion, colonialism, hip-hop and urban issues. This presentation explores how communities of faith can better understand and relate their sacred texts to issues of economic and social justice.

Tracks: Re-Reading Sacred Texts from the Lens of Economic Justice

 

Immigration Reform: What’s At Stake for Women and Families?

Ami Gandhi is the Executive Director of the South Asian American Policy and Research Institute (SAAPRI), which was established in 2001 to improve the lives of South Asian Americans in the Chicago area. The workshop will discuss barriers facing women and families under current immigration laws, opportunities for improving the system, and suggestions for advocating for reform. Participants will learn why immigration reform is a women’s issue, and how immigrant women fuel social and economic growth.

Tracks: Immigration Reform and Policy

 

Job Deserts: Breaking Through the Barriers of Economic Inequality.

Cynthia P. Stewart is a PhD Candidate at Garrett Evangelical Theological Seminary/Northwestern University. An “urban theologian,” she has a passion to see God in “the least of these.” This presentation addressed how economic injustice and gender is of special concern and how faith communities are organized to address specific issues facing women and others based on gender—including the intersection of religion, class, race, gender and poverty.

Tracts: Gender and Economic Justice

 

Strategies for Reducing Mass Incarceration.

Joseph W. Ellwanger and Andre Brown. Joseph W. Ellwanger is a retired ELCA pastor who served urban congregations in Birmingham, Alabama, 1958-1967, and in Milwaukee, 1967-2001. He was an organizer with WISDOM from 2002-2012, and is engaged in the congregation-based organizing effort known as the “11X15 Campaign”–to reduce the prison population. Andre Brown has been a case worker and employment specialist on the staff of Project RETURN, a reentry ministry in Milwaukee and is an advocate for the “11X15 Campaign.”

Tracks: Mass Incarceration and the Destruction of Our Communities

 

After Prison: Responding With Faith.

David Dault is Executive Director of the Chicago Sunday Evening Club, and host of the radio show Things Not Seen: Conversations about Culture and Faith. The presentation is about how faith communities are responding to the issue of crime and the criminalization of the economically disadvantaged and racial minorities. “What happens when they come home?” “After Prison: Responding with Faith” presents the stories of three Chicago faith communities that are working to heal the lives of ex-offenders, offering them dignity, opportunity, support, and hope.

Tracks: Mass Incarceration and the Destruction of Our Communities

 

Mayor 1% and the Neoliberal Agenda.

Kari Lydersen is a Chicago reporter, author and journalism instructor; co-director of the Social Justice News Nexus at Northwestern University and author of Mayor 1%: Rahm Emanuel and the Rise of Chicago’s 99%. The presentation seeks to understand how corporations are taking over public services such as schools, prisons, public utilities and electoral processes impacting public welfare and the common good.

Track: Corporatization and the Common Good

 

Site Visit: Lincoln Park Community Shelter.

Site visit Coordinator: Lydia Murray, Chairperson of the Board of Directors, SCUPE. The LP Community Shelter’s creation/ operation is the result of a partnership of 4 churches in a wealthier neighborhood in Chicago coming together to address an issue of economic justice. They have transformed one floor of one of the 4 sister churches to be a welcome, safe and inviting shelter – and the congregations provide the bulk of the volunteer hours operating the shelter -along with board members.

Track: Organizing Religious Communities

 

Site Visit: Touring Little Village.

Michael D. Rodriguez is the Executive Director of Enlace Chicago. Enlace Chicago is dedicated to making a positive difference in the lives of the residents of the Little Village Community by fostering a physically safe and healthy environment in which to live and by championing opportunities for educational advancement and economic development. Enlace Chicago works to improve these conditions through a preventative and proactive approach to strengthen Little Village families and the community.

Track: Immigration Policy

You will find a full listing of workshops here in PDF format.

We invite those who are interested to apply for an exhibit space at our 2014 Congress on Urban Ministry. We will be focusing on the theme of economic justice. Examples of past exhibitors include non-profit organizations, denominational groups, seminaries, and universities.
With limited exhibition space, all applications are pending approval by the Congress Planning Committee. Your application will be reviewed and a committee member will contact you regarding your application.

*In addition to these exhibits, the Congress will be hosting vendors and artisan exhibitors in our “Just Economy” exhibit space on Wednesday June 25, 2014. If you are an artist or fair trade group wishing to sell products, please contact Dani Samons for more details (dani@scupe.com).

2014Congress-ExhibitorsApplicationDownload the exhibitor application form in .pdf here.

SCUPEs Urban Ministry Conference
June 23-26 at DePaul University, Chicago

OVERVIEW

CHICAGO —Six globally known social justice-oriented religious scholars will present analysis, theological interpretation and vision for social and economic change during the 17th Congress on Urban Ministry, June 23-26 in Chicago.

The Congress will be held at the DePaul University Student Center in Lincoln Park.

Hundreds of seminarians, pastors and religious leaders, social policy analysts and community organizers are expected to attend and participate.

DividerConference Co-Chair Rev. Dr. Otis Moss IIIWhat is the Congress on Urban Ministry?  The Congress on Urban Ministry has become one of the premier urban ministry events in the world.

The pastors, students, academics, church and community leaders who attend the Congress interact, collaborate, and conspire with hundreds of other practitioners and theorists from across North America and around the world.  They acquire resources, sharpen skills, learn new ideas and the latest research, and delve into urban issues through a broad and deep range of workshops.  This diverse group of participants is committed to finding creative ways to prepare and resource individuals so that their ministries may better confront the issues and needs of their communities.

Participants are inspired, renewed, and motivated by renowned speakers, celebratory worship, and a sense of God’s love at work in cities everywhere.The Congress is organized biennially, by SCUPE in partnership with organizations, agencies, and denominations doing urban ministry.

2014 Congress On Urban Ministry - Fact Sheet

2014 Congress – Fact Sheet

Divider2014 Congress – Fact Sheet

Download the 2014 Congress – Fact Sheet in .pdf format

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News Release - 2014 Congress On Urban Ministry

2014 Congress – News Release

DividerGlobal Wealth Inequality will be Explored at the June 23-26 Urban Ministry Conference

Hundreds to Study ‘Together Building a Just Economy’ During 2014 SCUPE Meeting in Chicago

Download the 2014 Congress – News Release in .pdf format

 

 

 

 

 

 

DividerNATIONALLY KNOWN SPEAKERS

  • Rev. Dr. Allan Boesak, a South African liberation theologian;
  • Sister Simone Campbell, executive director of Network, a national Catholic social justice lobby, and organizer of “Nuns on the Bus;”
  • Bishop Sally Dyck, leader of the Northern Illinois Conference of the United Methodist Church;
  • Rev. Dr. Otis Moss III, senior pastor of Trinity United Church of Christ in Chicago;
  • Dr. Saskia Sassen, Robert S. Lynd professor of sociology at Columbia University in the City of New York and co-chair of the university’s Committee on Global Thought;
  • Dr. Helene Slessarev-Jamir, professor of urban ministry at Claremont School of Theology in California and a member of the United Methodist Church’s National Committee for Hispanic/Latino Ministry and National Immigration Task Force.
  • Rev. Dr. Paul Sherry of Cleveland, board president of Interfaith Worker Justice, and former president of the United Church of Christ will serve as one of the co-chairs of the congress along with Moss and Slessarev-Jamir.

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CONFERENCE THEMES

Wealth inequality explored via these issues:

  • Fighting poverty
  • Confronting economic violence
  • Strengthening urban families
  • Supporting ministers working in urban areas
  • Developing strategies for the future of urban churches.

Specific topics include: (a) mass-incarceration, (b) immigration, (c) power of business corporations, (d) organizing religious communities, (e) examining sacred texts from an economic justice lens as well as the role of economic justice and inequality upon (f) gender, (g) the environment and (h) news reporting.

DividerThe Congress on Urban Ministry is convened by the Seminary Consortium for Urban Pastoral Education, also known as “SCUPE” (pronounced “SCOOP”) – which has over 36 years of experience bringing innovative theological education to urban ministers, pastors, seminary students, community developers, and people who care for the city and city dwellers.

Dr. Cornel West at the 1994 Congress On Urban Ministry

Dr. Cornel West at the 1994 Congress On Urban Ministry

The congress is a bi-ennial project of SCUPE. The consortium is comprised of 12 seminaries and religion study centers representing nine U.S. Christian denominations.

Member seminaries and religion study centers in the SCUPE consortium are:

  • Anabaptist Mennonite Biblical Seminary of Elkhart, Ind.;
  • Christian Theological Seminary of Indianapolis;
  • Garrett-Evangelical Theological Seminary of Evanston, Ill.;
  • Institute for Pastoral Studies at Loyola University of Chicago, IL;
  • Louisville Presbyterian Theological Seminary of Louisville, Ky;
  • Luther Seminary of St. Paul, Minn.;
  • Lutheran School of Theology at Chicago;
  • Payne Theological Seminary of Wilberforce, Ohio;
  • Pittsburgh Theological Seminary;
  • Trinity Lutheran Seminary of Columbus, Ohio;
  • Samuel DeWitt Proctor School of Theology at Virginia Union University of Richmond; and
  • Western Theological Seminary of Holland, Mich.

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Go to the E-Giving Online Transaction System

Up-Coming Classes

Interfaith & Intercultual Ministry Intensive (GTUS)
Rev. Dr. Shanta Premawardhana
January 5-9; 12-16, 2015
Mondays to Fridays 9am-5pm
M 302

Non-Violence in a Culture of Violence; Previously: Urban Peacemaking in a Culture of Violence (GTUS)
Rev. Bill Wylie-Kellermann
January 12-17, 2015
Monday to Saturday 9am – 5pm
S-H 306

Introduction to Theology (CAATS)
Dr. Howard Wiley
January 12 – March 16, 2015
Mondays from 6:15pm-9:15pm
Theo 320

New Testament Survey (CAATS)
Dr. Nolan Shaw
January 14 – March 18, 2015
Wednesdays from 6:15pm-9:15pm
Bib 303

History of Christianity: An African Story (CAATS)
Dr. David Daniels & Dr. Isaac Laudarji
January 15 – March 19, 2015
Thursdays from 6:15pm-9:15pm
Hist 310

Urban Principalities & the Spirit of the City (GTUS)
Rev. Bill Wylie Kellerman
February 6-7; 13-14; 20-21, 2015
Fridays, 1pm – 9pm; Saturdays 8:30am – 4pm
B-Th 302

History of the Latin@ Church in the U.S. (ALTE)
Dr. Carmelo Alvarez
February 6-7; 27-28; March 13-14; 27-28, 2015
(Friday/viernes 6pm - 9pm y Saturday/sábados 8:30am - 4pm)

Proctor Conference Course (CAATS)
Faculty TBA
February 7-12, 2015
Time & Location TBA
Eth 431

Support SCUPE

Go to the E-Giving Online Transaction System