Theology of Community Development

Kelley Nikondeha October 22, 2020

Kelley Nikondeha, a practical theologian and author, has worked alongside her husband in Burundi in central Africa for more than 12 years, in community development enterprises that include trade schools, an elementary school, a health clinic, a factory producing fortified porridge, and a bank serving over 40,000 previously unbanked Burundian families. What drives her in this work? And why should any of us care about the conditions and development of a community thousands of miles away? During this event, Kelley will outline a theology of community development useful to all people engaged in or desiring to support long-term work that aims for community-wide transformation. Engaging the biblical texts of the prophet Isaiah and Lamentations, she will provide a framework that helps us consider the long road between the failed urban economy of the “Old City” and the aspirational work of every practitioner, to build a “New City”. Her unique ability to weave scripture and stories will shed light on topics like economics, food security, healthcare, education, and advocacy. This conversation will be both practical and inspirational for thinkers, leaders, and anyone working to advance justice in communities they care deeply about. About Kelley Nikondeha: Kelley is the co-director and chief storyteller for Communities of Hope, a community development enterprise in Burundi. The author of  Adopted: The Sacrament of Belonging in a Fractured World (Eerdmans, 2017), a Christianity Today  2018 Award of Merit Christian Living/Discipleship,  and the recently published  Defiant: What the Women of Exodus Teach Us about Freedom (Eerdmans), Kelley also serves as the theologian-in-residence for  SheLoves Magazine, a global community of women committed to God’s imperatives to advance love and justice in the world.