A BLOG About Church Missions, Lasting Change and the World We Live In

Tom Bassford, Founder/President of Significant Matters & SATtalks

Who doesn’t want to make the world a better place?  It’s no longer enough to simply do random acts of kindness or hand out an endless stream of charity. Instead thoughtful people are asking questions about lasting change and sustainable solutions in our efforts to make the world a better place.  How does the church through its mission efforts create more sustainable and dignified ways of helping those we seek to help and grapple with what it means to live in a world that is always becoming?  That’s what this BLOG and SATtalks is all about.  I hope you’ll join the conversation and introduce us to others in your network.

Pastors, Between a Rock and a Hard Place | by Tom Bassford

Dear Pastors, in many ways we are genuinely between a rock and a hard place.  According to poll after poll the church in America is losing ground in attendance, influence, credibility and virtually every other category that really matters to us.  We can’t ignore that reality or gloss it over with theological sentiments like, “the church is the hope of the world.” When I stepped out of the Senior Pastorate in 2004 and started Significant Matters I started a journey that has led me deeper into conversations around human dignity, poverty and the fallacy of secular/sacred work.  That journey [...]

By | September 12th, 2018|Categories: Uncategorized|0 Comments

Catalyst for Collaboration and the Common Good | by Tom Bassford

  The Church as a catalyst for collaboration is one of the four essential practices of what we call a Missions 3.0 church.  Along with the practices of Reframing Expectations, Tackling Outcomes and Cultivating Innovation churches that want to make a lasting impact on their communities have to become a Catalyst for Collaboration.  Why?  Because no one church can do it alone AND because the Church alone can’t do it. In 2011 Stanford Social Innovation Review (SSIR) introduced the concept of “collective impact” in an article by the same name.  It described a form of collaboration that was more [...]

By | August 29th, 2018|Categories: Uncategorized|0 Comments

Solving Complex Social Problems with Innovative Sustainable Models | by Dr. Justin Beene

With a background as both a recipient and provider of philanthropic efforts and human services support, I often have wondered how to truly develop the economic capacity and well-being with people on the margins of society. I wrestle with some seemingly contradictory statistics and a puzzling trend in my own community. Specifically, Grand Rapids, Michigan, is consistently rated among the most philanthropic communities in the county1, it also continues to be one of the worst cities in the country for African Americans to live economically.2 Despite all of the supportive efforts that have lauded national recognition, these alone have [...]

By | August 29th, 2018|Categories: Uncategorized|0 Comments

Catalyzing Transformational City Movements | by Dr. Randy White

Catalyzing Transformational City Movements is the second chapter in Dr. Randy White and H Spees new book "Out of Nazareth: Christ-Centered Civic Transformation In Unlikely Places" available at They have made this entire chapter available to us as a whitepaper.  Email us at and we will send you the pdf file. For this article we pulled from a section entitled:  Faith-Rooted Social Enterprise and Entrepreneurship It was this work that first caught my eye because it demonstrates the need to think differently about how we use our charitable dollars to help people lift themselves out of poverty.  It doesn't make [...]

By | August 21st, 2018|Categories: Uncategorized|0 Comments

Why I Would Want to Work with the Church Even if I Were an Atheist | by Tom Bassford

  I had the opportunity to address a gathering of people at the Kauffman Center a few years back who were all involved in Social Entrepreneurship programs at various Colleges and Universities across the country. We were involved in a project that was spear-headed by a group of churches working with some various folks at UMKC (University of Missouri, Kansas City). I usually speak to church crowds, or at least faith-based crowds but since this was a secular setting with a secular crowd I decided to present a secular value proposition for why the community might want to work with [...]

By | August 21st, 2018|Categories: Uncategorized|0 Comments

How Are the Children? | by Nancy Mitchell

Two years ago, one of our Kansas City superintendents addressed a community gathering by saying, “Kasserian Ingera?” He explained that this is the greeting of the Masai community in Kenya. He explained that when one Masai greets another they ask, “How are the children?” The values of Masai culture reflect that their first concern is the next generation. The reply they seek is, “All the children are well.” They do not believe their society is doing well if all of the children are not doing well. So, I ask that question of you, “How are the children in our cities doing?” I believe [...]

By | August 16th, 2018|Categories: Uncategorized|0 Comments

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