Bible Study and Worship Resources



Potters' Field Liturgy PDF


Fast for Fair Food Prayer
by Crystal Hall
March 6, 2012

Poverty Initiative Committee Opening Prayer
Art Trotman
October 24, 2011


A Talk by Willie Baptist
Episcopal Church of the Good Shepherd
Barre, VT
March 24, 2013


Jeremiah 33 Sermon Part 1 by Emily McNeill
Jeremiah 33 Sermon Part 2 by Liz Theoharis
First Presbyterian Church
Asheville, NC
October 30, 2011


Sermon prepared by Crystal Hall
for Preaching and Worship 101

at Union Theological Seminary
November 18, 2010
Text: Romans 3:9-31

Abstract: This sermon explores the foot of the cross as potentially meaningful place for building new communities across traditional boundaries of division.  Out of the trauma of execution, new life can emerge in the building of movements.  Paul and Jesus are reclaimed in the text of Romans 3, which has been weighted by centuries of interpretation, particularly the Protestant doctrine of justification by faith first articulated by Martin Luther and atonement theory.  The ministry and crucifixion of Jesus, and the ministry and assassination of Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. are used as examples.

Key Words: Cross, Martin Luther, Jesus, Paul, Atonement Theory, Martin Luther King, Jr., Poor People's Campaign

Sermon prepared by Crystal Hall
for St. Lydia’s at Trinity Lower East Side Church New York, NY

July 31, 2011
Text: Psalm 9

Abstract: This sermon retells part of Ron Casanova's story as a leader in the National Union of the Homeless (NUH), particularly through his first organizing efforts at Tompkins Square Park in New York City.  Slogans from the NUH are explored in dialogue with themes from Psalm 9, challenging the traditional dichotomy between what is considered "sacred" and "secular."  The history of struggle in Tompkins Square Park is connected with contemporary struggles of those in poverty in the current economic crisis.  The call to "tell our story" is to claim both a history of struggle and the contemporary imperative to do justice.  This call is made in this sermon through parallels among the biblical text, historical and contemporary struggles.

Key Words: Poverty, National Union of the Homeless, Ron Casanova, Tompkins Square Park, Story Telling

Poverty Initiative Leadership School Chapel
Rev. Shelly Fayette
Wilkes-Barre, PA
July 10, 2011

Our Will To End Poverty
Poverty Scholar Laura Rodgers
Poor Voices United
Toms River Congregational Church
January 30, 2011

Re-igniting the Poor People’s Campaign
Derrick McQueen
UU Congregation @ Shelter Rock
January 16, 2011

Sermon Inspired by a Potter's Field Memorial Service - Jeremiah 32:1-15
Crystal Hall
October 2010

On This Day…
Derrick McQueen
Fourth Unitarian Universalist Church
September 4, 2010 (Labor Day)

Exegesis of Genesis 41:19
Aaron Scott
James Chapel, Union Theological Seminary
February 16, 2009 

Ending Poverty Is Possible
Liz Theoharis
First Presbyterian Church, New Canaan, CT
January 4, 2009

Sermon on The Persistent Widow - Luke 18: 1-5
Jeff Mansfield
Restaurant Opportunities Center New York

From the Ashes of Our Hopelessness Rises the Flame of New Hope
H. Mitchell Watson
Poverty Scholars Program Leadership School
Camp Virgil Tate, West Virginia
August 10th, 2009, 5pm

Space for Grace
Mary Ellen Kris
Park Avenue United Methodist Church, New York City,
Sunday, August 16th.

Three Men and a Road
Dan Chadwick
October 4, 2009

Persist to Resist
Derrick McQueen
Upper Montclair Presbyterian Church
September 2009

Chapel Reflection
Rachel Barnhart
Union Theological Seminary Communion Chapel Service
October 29, 2009


Benediction from the Romero chapel by Rosalind Gnatt


Theologies of Ministry - An Interview with Liz Theoharis.  As a part of a "theologies of ministry" project for her field education class at Union Theological Seminary, Poverty Initiative Fellow Crystal Hall interviewed the coordinator of the Poverty Initiative, Liz Theoharis. This interview explores a number of biblical and theological themes, particularly as they relate to poor people's organizing and the ministry of ending poverty.

Poverty Initiative

at Union Theological Seminary
3041 Broadway
New York, NY 10027
(212) 280-1439