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This project tests how the practices of listening to neighbors, listening to Scripture together, and reflecting on God’s work in the neighborhood can cultivate a missional imagination within First Presbyterian Church of Pomona. Specifically, this missional en- deavor engages in an experiment of congregants listening to a group of young adults and tracks the church’s shift in missional imagination. This project is discussed in three parts.

Part One describes the ways that the church has sought out its neighbors. It ex- plores various frameworks that shape the imagination of the church. It presents the prima- ry adaptive challenge that led to framing this specific project as a next step.

Part Two discusses the project of gathering young adults, who have grown up in the neighborhood, with learning partners who have relocated to the neighborhood. The gatherings consist of a meal, sharing stories, and reflecting on Scripture together. Record- ings of the participants’ reflections and comments are tracked to note qualitative shift in missional awareness.

Part Three examines a theological framework for this experiment. This section ex- amines a theology of listening and making space for the other across socioeconomic lines. It also explores the practice of shared hospitality and listening and evaluates mis- sional learnings that occurred during two debrief meetings. This evaluation uses the prin- ciple of simultaneity to highlight ways in which the Spirit began moving in the church during this project, despite the project’s inability to launch further experiments.

Degree Name

Doctor of Ministry (DMin)

First Advisor

Roxburgh, Alan

Document Type





Missional, Presbyterian, Listening



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