Extended Interview with Efrem Smith

Efrem Smith

Bio: Author of The Hip-Hop Church; Senior pastor of The Sanctuary Covenant Church in Minneapolis.
Web site: www.sanctuarycov.org

1. What delights you in your daily work?

Smith: What delights me is participating in the transformation of community, but also a feeling that, because our church is intentionally urban and multicultural, that in some ways we’re changing the face of the church.

2. What would be an example of a moment when you experienced that?

There’s a number … One moment was, we adopted a school a couple years ago, where we were sending volunteers from our church to tutor kids in that school; we were also doing some afterschool programs there, and we found out that there were a number of kids who were being bused to that school from a homeless shelter. We didn’t have the wherewithal at the time to totally address their housing challenges to the fullest extent, but we wanted to make sure that those kids went to school with dignity, and so we provided brand-new backpacks, school supplies, and winter coats and boots and mittens for all of those kids. To be able to partner with that school in that way - and that opened doors for us to connect with some of the parents of those kids, and impact their lives - to me, that’s really what we’re about.

3. What would you say was the biggest challenge that you and folks at Sanctuary Covenant experience now?

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Sojourners Magazine February 2010
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