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S E S S I O N 0 1 , V I D E O 02

"Why Isn't Charity Working?"

  PL ATFO R M SAY: There appear to be two things that hinder our most well-intentioned efforts from being effective. Write down the words in bold on the whiteboard and point them to page 18 in the Participant’s Guide so they can capture these key ideas.

•  SAY: First, there is a proximity disorder. Too often there is a relational and/or geographic distance that separates the givers and the receivers from one another. This lack of proximity prevents any real relationship and authentic listening. Problems are often misunderstood and the impact of the programs that get set up are often unexamined. The leaders in these videos stressed the need for relationship as a key to changing how we think about and respond to the challenges being faced by people in our community. •  SAY: This idea of having a more relational, rather than transactional, encounter isn’t new, however. When we pay close attention to the biblical texts that call us to generosity and compassion, they assume there is a personal connection. They assume that the people are living in community with one another. The context of biblical generosity is so often hospitality, not provision of services. (This is a key statement. It may be worth repeating or writing on the board.) •  SAY: The second thing hindering the effectiveness of many charity models is diagnostic error. Whether we are talking things gone wrong with our bodies, cars, or HVAC systems, if we want to create solutions that lead to desirable results, we need to have a proper understanding of the root causes behind the symptoms. One of the key points in this video is the failure to properly diagnose the root causes of the symptoms that our charity models are set up to respond to. •  SAY: Check out page 18 in your Participant’s Guide. Too many charity models fail to distinguish

Week One - Session 01, Video 02  | 1 9


S E S S I O N 0 1 , V I D E O 02

"Why Isn't Charity Working?"

between crisis and chronic poverty. Crises — like a death, natural disaster, or unexpected loss of a job — require emergency relief. One-way giving of free resources to people facing a need makes perfect sense in an emergency or crisis situation. Chronic, ongoing poverty, however, requires a development response. We have to think about building capacity, investment, and empowerment. Charity becomes harmful when we practice the one-way giving of resources in chronic situations. When poverty is ongoing or chronic, we have to ask why those problems exit, get an accurate diagnosis, and begin implementing the right kind of strategies that get beyond the symptoms to the root of the problem. •  SAY: If you compare the Good Samaritan story to the text we examined in 1 Timothy, we see distinct and faithful approaches to material poverty. Both are based on dignity, generosity, and capacity. They adjust the response to the situation. Too often we apply the same medicine to

S E S S I O N 0 1 , V I D E O 03

"The Cold Water Collective"

the same presenting symptom when the underlying issues are radically different.

 V I E WI N G SAY: Our final video from the day is an animation called The Cold Water Collective. Part parable and part case study, it offers us an opportunity to think carefully about the basic paradigm out of which many charity models emerge.

2 0   | Week One - Session 01, Video 03

Seeking Shalom | Leader's Guide - Pages 19-20  
Seeking Shalom | Leader's Guide - Pages 19-20  
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