Veteran urban activist Robert Lupton reveals the shockingly toxic effects that modern charity has upon the very people meant to benefit from it. Toxic Charity provides proven new models for charitable groups who want to helpnot sabotagethose whom they desire to serve. Lupton, the founder of FCS Urban Ministries (Focused Community Strategies) in Atlanta, the voice of the Urban Perspectives newsletter, and the author of Compassion, Justice and the Christian Life, has been at the forefront of urban ministry activism for forty years. Now, in the vein of Jeffrey Sachs’s The End of Poverty, Richard Stearns’s The Hole in Our Gospel, and Gregory Boyle’s Tattoos on the Heart, his groundbreaking Toxic Charity shows us how to start serving needy and impoverished members of our communities in a way that will lead to lasting, real-world change.
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About the Author
Chris Andrew Ciulla, an Earphones Award–winning narrator, is a credited actor, host, voice actor, producer, boxing commentator/analyst, and radio personality. In addition to frequent film, television, and on-camera commercial work, he has voiced characters for the popular video game titles Fallout 4 and Mafia III and can be heard in national commercial campaigns. A versatile performer with over fifteen years of experience, he has dedicated his life to entertaining people.
Robert D. Lupton is founder and president of FCS (Focused Community Strategies) Urban Ministries and author of Toxic Charity; Theirs Is the Kingdom; Return Flight; Renewing the City; Compassion, Justice, and the Christian Life;and the widely circulated “Urban Perspectives” newsletter. He has a Ph.D. in psychology from the University of Georgia.
To learn more, visit www.fcsministries.org.
Table of Contents
Chapter 1 The Scandal 1
Chapter 2 The Problem with Good Intentions 11
Chapter 3 The Anatomy of Giving 31
Chapter 4 Needs vs. Relationships 51
Chapter 5 Beyond Us-Based Giving 65
Chapter 6 No Quick Fixes 85
Chapter 7 Wise Giving 103
Chapter 8 Take the Oath 127
Chapter 9 Service with Dignity 147
Chapter 10 Getting Started 165
What People are Saying About This
“In Toxic Charity, Lupton reminds us that being materialistically poor does not mean that there is no capacity, no voice, and no dignity within a person. If we truly love the poor, we will want to educate ourselves on how best to serve. Let our charity be transformative not toxic.”
“A superb book. Toxic Charity should serve as a guide and course correction for anyone involved in charitable endeavors at home or abroad.”
“Lupton’s work, his books and, most importantly, his life continue to guide and encourage me to live and serve in a way that honors God and my neighbor. I highly recommend Toxic Charity.”
“When Bob Lupton speaks of the inner city, the rest of us ought to sit up and take notice... [His work is] deeply distrurbing—in the best sense of the word.”
“Lupton’s book reminds us that it is more blessed to give than to receive. He shows how the people called poor can be blessed by supporting opportunities for them to give their gifts, skills, knowledge and wisdom to creating the future.”
“Toxic Charity provides the needed counterbalance to a kind heart: a wise mind. Though I often thought, “Ouch!” while I was reading the book, Robert Lupton gave this pastor what I needed to become a more effective leader.”