Popular Author Challenges Culture to "Change the World"

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Mike Slaughter works to take the church into the world instead of coaxing the world into the church

Mike Slaughter (http://mikeslaughter.com/blog) knows a lot about making a big impact on a small community. Under his leadership, Ginghamsburg United Methodist Church has grown from 90 worshippers a week to more than 5,000. The small country church in Tipp City, Ohio, is deeply involved in reaching out to Dayton, named by Forbes magazine in August 2008 as one of the 10 fastest dying cities in the U.S.

The church's work also extends far beyond local concerns to such global crises as the civil conflict in Darfur. Acting on a key Change the World theme, Christmas Is Not Your Birthday, the Ohio church has raised nearly 4 million dollars to revive farming and clean water initiatives in Darfur. Raising money in the tough economic times is insight into the philosophy of Slaughter and his congregation as they model the right perspective about finances. (Read more in Upside Living in a Downside Economy, Abingdon Press, 2009)

Slaughter's vision over the next 5 to 10 years is that the Church strategically focuses on being salt and light. "I think the Church needs to be involved in the culture in both spiritual and physical need-meeting ways, expecting nothing in return," he says. "They will know we are disciples of Christ by the way we love. The Church is the yeast for Christ's love."

One of the first steps the church needs to take is to reclaim urban renewal as a priority since 84% of Americans live in urban areas. At the upcoming Change the World Conference (http://ginghamsburg.org/changetheworld) he will address that very concern. This year's conference theme is "ministry with the poor" with an emphasis on helping leaders create partnerships with both public and other non-profit agencies for greater impact.

The conference will be held at Ginghamsburg United Methodist Church, October 22 - 23, 2009. Featured speakers will include Ruby K. Payne, Ron Sider, Trevor Hudson, and Mike Slaughter. Abingdon Press has launched a website dedicated to spreading Mike's vision to change the world at http://www.changetheworld.abingdonpress.com.

In tandem with the conference, Slaughter will be releasing Change the World: Rediscovering and Reclaiming the Message and Mission of Jesus (February 2010) which gives readers the steps for becoming the hands and feet of Jesus in the world.

Abingdon Press is the publishing imprint for The United Methodist Publishing House. Abingdon Press has a distinguished record in religious publishing for a broad ecumenical audience and specializes in products for church leaders, as well as scholars and students engaged in theological education and the practice of ministry. Abingdon Press offers a wide array of quality academic, professional, reference, and devotional titles published each year.

Ashley Miller, Publicist
Abingdon Press


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Julie Dowd