The InnerCHANGE team in Minneapolis is located in the Phillips neighborhood (near the south side). Historically, this neighborhood has been home to both the city’s native and immigrant poor as well as some of the city’s wealthiest families.
Today, as the largest neighborhood in Minneapolis, Phillips continues to be home to a rich diversity of cultures that include Native Americans, African Americans, Somali (largest population in the U.S.), Latino (over 500% growth since 1990) and a wide variety of immigrant families. It is a neighborhood that has experienced rapid change in recent years.
Since its inception in 1995, the InnerCHANGE team in Minneapolis has labored toward one overarching goal: to facilitate the birth and growth of new communities of disciples, whose expression and life together flesh out the vision of what it means to be the church. Because Phillips has historically been one of the most impoverished neighborhoods in Minneapolis, there exist a number of social service agencies whose aim is to meet the many and varied needs of the neighborhood. However, even though many material needs can be met through these agencies and a wide variety of assets existing in the neighborhood, what is often missing for those on the margins are long-term, stable, healthy relationships with those who are willing to share life together.
Our priority as an InnerCHANGE team has been to establish simple churches that will foster these kinds of relationships centered on our commitment to love and follow Jesus. The various arenas in which we seek to serve others in our community have as their primary aim to build relationships in which the good news of the love of Jesus can be shared and a community of believers established. Most often we have found ourselves learning, serving, and partnering with existing organizations to carry out this purpose.