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- DescriptionThis pioneering new study of the Black megachurch phemen brings nuance and depth to the question, are Black megachurches more focused on prosperity than on people? Black megachurches and their pastors are often accused of failing to use their considerable resources to help the poor; focusing on prosperity theology rather than on social justice; requiring excessive monetary and time commitments of members; and pilfering church coffers for the their personal use. The debate rages on about whether these congregations are doing all they can to address specific challenges facing African American communities. Live Long and Prosper is a refreshing, invative study that reaches beyond superficial understandings of the Black megachurch phemen in a piercing interrogation of how powerful megachurches address (or fail to address) two social crises in the Black community: HIV/AIDS and poverty. Live Long and Prosper offers an intriguing examination of sixteen representative Black megachurches and explores some of their motivations and subsequent programmatic efforts in light of prosperity or health and wealth theology. Professor Barnes makes the case that the Black megachurch is a complex, contemporary model of the historic Black church in response to globalism, consumerism, secularism, religious syncretism, and the realities of race. She contends that many of these megachurches hold unique characteristics of adaptability and invation that position them well to tackle difficult social issues. Prosperity theology emphasizes two characteristics--physical health and ecomic wealth--as examples of godly living and faith. This book considers whether and how efforts to address HIV/AIDS (a health issue) and poverty (a wealth issue) are influenced by church and clergy profiles; theology, in general; and prosperity theology, in particular. Frame analysis informs this mixed-methodological study to compare and contrast experiences, theological beliefs, pastoral profiles, and programs. Live Long and Prosper is a must-read for general readers, academics, and students alike--indeed, anyone interested in the contemporary Black megachurch's response to social problems and the link between theology and social action. It is at once a fascinating, readable narrative and a rich piece of scholarship complete with extensively documented endtes, statistics, informative charts and tables, and an exhaustive bibliography.
- Author BiographySandra L. Barnes is Professor in the Department of Human and Organizational Development and the School of Divinity at Vanderbilt University. Her numerous books include Black Megachurch Culture: Models for Education and Empowerment, The Cost of Being Poor: A Comparative Study of Life in Poor Urban Neighborhoods in Gary, Indiana, and the co-edited Black Sexualities: Probing Passions, Problems, and Policies (Rutgers University).
- Author(s)Sandra L. Barnes
- PublisherFordham University Press
- Date of Publication01/11/2012
- SubjectChristian Theology
- Place of PublicationNew York
- Country of PublicationUnited States
- ImprintFordham University Press
- Content Noteblack & white line drawings, black & white tables
- Weight355 g
- Width150 mm
- Height226 mm
- Spine20 mm
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