Six-session handbook released to accompany Smart Compassion

News Release 
May 31, 2107

Six-session handbook released to accompany Smart Compassion
Tools for moving beyond random acts of kindness

HARRISONBURG, Va. — A new handbook to complement Wesley Furlong’s book Smart Compassion: How to Stop “Doing Outreach” and Start Making Change has been released this May. The six-session guide includes Scriptures, discussion questions, prayer prompts, diagrams, and practical action points for engaging in a community and helping families and neighborhoods to flourish. The study guide also features QR codes that lead readers to web-based resources such as tools for community mapping and strengths-based assessments.

The study guide will help churches, ministry teams, small groups, and individuals go from “doing outreach” to embodying healing presence, living out radical hospitality, and working toward collective empowerment. Designed to be used along with Furlong’s Smart Compassion (Herald Press, February 2017), the 80-page study guide includes these six sessions:

  1. What Should We Expect?
  2. The Posture of Compassion
  3. The Gift of Attention
  4. Boundary-Shifting Love
  5. Spend Yourself Well
  6. To What End?

Steve Corbett, coauthor of When Helping Hurts, says that Furlong’s work is “built on important and well-recognized principles” and “provides pathways and inspiration to move us to be with and walk with people.” Minister and civil rights activist John M. Perkins says of Smart Compassion: “Don’t read [it] if you want your church to remain safe and comfortable. Read it if you want to fully immerse yourself in God’s plan for mercy, justice, and healing in your neighborhood.”

Both books are available from Herald Press at 800-245-7894 or www.HeraldPress.com. Smart Compassion is available for $15.99 USD ($12.99 USD ebook; $28.99 USD hardcover), and the handbook is $9.99 USD. Discounted rates for bulk orders are available.

Wesley Furlong is the founder and director of City of Refuge, a network for community transformation, and the director of church development for EVANA, an evangelical Anabaptist network of churches across North America.

To schedule an interview with Wesley Furlong, contact LeAnn Hamby at (540) 908-3941 or LeAnnH@mennomedia.org.

What does it really take for our communities to flourish?

News Release

Revised January 30, 2017

Pastor shares strategy for how real change happens in new book, Smart Compassion

HARRISONBURG, Va.— What does compassion look like when the needs seem overwhelming? What is our role in the flourishing of our community? How does such work relate to worship?

Wesley Furlong’s Smart Compassion: How to Stop “Doing Outreach” and Start Making Change (Herald Press, February 2017) calls Christians to strategic, prayerful, and biblically based approaches to compassion.

“My hope for you is that in the face of personal struggles, limited time, complex needs, and endless options, you will develop a vision for how your community can thrive,” says Furlong. The book journeys through inspiring places and thought-provoking conversations on how and where good and necessary change happens.

A common thread in Smart Compassion is the potential of healing presence, radical hospitality, and collective empowerment. When these three forces come together, Furlong says, “You’ll see new life.”

Smart compassion is the full pursuit of a community’s flourishing in a spirit of worship and prayer. Smart compassion holds together justice and evangelism, wisdom and revelation, and the broadly communal and deeply personal aspects of life.

Furlong adds that “smart compassion is, put simply, ten thousand acts of authentic compassion that are strategic, well networked, and responsive to the real needs of a defined community.”

Editorial Director Amy Gingerich says that for churches who want to make a difference but are not quite sure how, Smart Compassion offers a contagious vision and practical steps for significant change. A companion handbook is planned for release May 2017.

Wesley Furlong is the founder and director of City of Refuge, a network for community transformation, and the director of church development for EVANA, an evangelical Anabaptist network of churches across North America. Furlong holds a master’s degree in theology from Emory University and is working toward a PhD in social work. He and his wife, Bonnie, have three children as well as an ever-changing number of foster children. Connect with him at WesleyFurlong.com.

To schedule an interview with Wesley Furlong, contact LeAnn Hamby at (540) 908-3941 or LeAnnH@mennomedia.org.

Smart Compassion │ 9781513800394 │ 2/7/2017 │ $15.99 USD │ Paperback │176 pages│Herald Press

 

To purchase Smart Compassion call 800-245-7894 or go to www.HeraldPress.com