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Saving Souls, Serving SocietyUnderstanding the Faith Factor in Church-Based Social Ministry$
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Heidi Rolland Unruh and Ronald J. Sider

Print publication date: 2005

Print ISBN-13: 9780195161557

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: October 2005

DOI: 10.1093/0195161556.001.0001

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Social Capital and Spiritual Capital

Social Capital and Spiritual Capital

(p.217) 11 Social Capital and Spiritual Capital
Saving Souls, Serving Society

Heidi Rolland Unruh

Ronald J. Sider (Contributor Webpage)

Oxford University Press

Congregations represent a significant source of energy for social action because of their unique capacity to mobilize a constituent network for collective ends. Congregations translate their social capital into public good by sponsoring organized action, by empowering the civic involvement of members, by sharing resources within the congregation's relational network, and by harnessing religious cultural capital to social concerns. An evangelistic mission may strengthen a church's social capital, particularly if the church adopts a relational, holistic mission orientation, sharing its faith both in word and deed. This potential may be limited, however, by the challenges of connecting with people across racial, cultural or socioeconomic class lines, and by the lack of a social vision.

Keywords:   social capital, churches, social action, resources, cultural capital, evangelism, relationalism, social networks, socioeconomic class

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