1. How big is the problem of poverty in your community? What local initiatives have tried to reduce poverty? Have they been successful? What circumstances lead to high levels of poverty? Do you have a sense of hope that the problems of poverty can be overcome?
2. Derek Cook suggests that our current social, economic and political systems value consumerism and independence, and operate on the assumption that resources are limited. Do you agree? Are these values polar opposites to Jesus’ description of God’s kingdom? Is this how the church is called to be countercultural?
3. In what ways do our social structures and laws take advantage of vulnerable people? Do you agree with Cook that charity “reinforces the power relationships we have with others”? What social structures or laws would you change to make our Canadian society more just?
4. Why is trust necessary for a community to flourish? Does a trusting community naturally share its resources with all members of the community? How can we work at building strong communities that empower everyone to be resilient?