LET’S MAP OUR COMMUNITY!
Following the amazing response to ‘We see a church that…’ we will be prayer-walking our community throughout the week for the next four weeks.
If we want to be part of community, grow and nurtue community, it's important to understand community -- what a community is, and the specific nature of the communities we live, work, play, serve and worship in. Anything we do in a community requires us to be familiar with its people, its issues, and its history.
A good way to accomplish that is to create a community description -- a record of our exploration and findings. It's a good way to gain a comprehensive overview of the community -- what it is now, what it's been in the past, and what it could be in the future.
WHAT IS A COMMUNITY?
While we traditionally think of a community as the people in a given geographical location, the word can really refer to any group sharing something in common. This may refer to smaller geographic areas -- a neighbourhood, a housing project or development, a rural area -- or to a number of other possible communities within a larger, geographically-defined community. These are often defined by race or ethnicity, professional or economic ties, religion, culture, or shared background or interest.
The Anglican community (or faith community, a term used to refer to one or more congregations of a [community] specific faith).
The arts community
The isiXhosa, Afrikaans or English speaking community
The education community
The business community
The homeless community
The gay, lesbian, bisexual, and transgender community
The medical community
The Refugee community
The elderly community
These various communities often overlap. An Afrikaans speaking art teacher, for example, might see herself (or be seen by others) as a member of the Afrikaans arts, and/or education communities, as well as of a particular faith community.
WHAT DO WE MEAN BY UNDERSTANDING AND DESCRIBING THE COMMUNITY?
Understanding the community entails understanding it in a number of ways. Whether or not the community is defined geographically, it still has a geographic context -- a setting that it exists in. Getting a clear sense of this setting may be key to a full understanding of it. At the same time, it's important to understand the specific community you're concerned with. You have to get to know its people -- their culture, their concerns, and relationships -- and to develop your own relationships with them as well.
Patterns of settlement, commerce, and industry
Community leaders, formal and informal
Community culture, formal and informal
Attitudes and values
A community description can be as creative as we are capable of making it. It can be written as a story, can incorporate photos and commentary from community residents (see Photovoice), can be done online and include audio and video, etc. The more interesting the description is, the more we are probably likely to actually read it!
To help us participate in this as creatively as possible, we will be sharing our discoveries, so visit the Welcome Area at CCK. We would also like every member of CCK to engage with these findings. As a member of the community, you have insights that will help us develop a truer understanding of the communities around us.
Taryn Galloway, 01/06/2017
Christ Church Kenilworth | Cnr Summerley & Richmond Road | Tel: +27 (021) 797 6332 | E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org
: Sunday Worship 8.00am, 10.00am & 6.30pm | Wednesday Service: 10am | Tuesday Quiet Service: 6.30pm (fortnightly)
Taryn Galloway, 06/05/2015