Bringing God’s Word to Our Nation’s Cities

American Bible Society Expands Urban Ministry

Expanding urban Bible ministry can transform hearts and minds in cities across the United States.

Known for bringing God’s Word to hard-to-reach places worldwide, American Bible Society also focuses its attention at home through key partnerships that foster Scripture engagement in cities around the country.

Through an alliance with the New York City Leadership Center (NYCLC) and Concerts of Prayer Greater New York (COPGNY), American Bible Society helped catalyze Movement Day in 2011. Since then, it has become a yearly event in New York City.

Movement Day brings together Christian leaders from the nation’s largest cities to address challenges and collaborate on ways to develop and renew outreach in metropolitan communities.

“Our partnership calls leaders and churches to unite and ignite our nation to pray, engage and live God’s Word with the desired outcome of seeing cities healed and transformed,” says Dr. John Edgar Caterson, executive director of Catalytic Church Partnerships at American Bible Society.

The “Now is the Time” initiative—a collaboration among American Bible Society, NYCLC and COPGNY from the first Movement Day—extends and accelerates Scripture engagement throughout the United States. This effort provides Christian leaders with discussion guides, sermon outlines and reading planners to help communities live out Scripture.

Engagement outcomes thus far have been fruitful. Since the launch of “Now is the Time,” up to 240,000 participants in 2,020 churches have been touched by God’s Word.

“So many in our nation’s cities suffer crushing wounds of the heart,” says Chris Thyberg, director of special projects at American Bible Society. “As a result, they are cut off from engaging with the Bible and experiencing the restoring power of God’s Word. These initiatives in cities nationwide not only are bringing necessary healing, but also are mobilizing this Millennial ‘justice generation’ with the transforming power of Scripture to bring restoration and wholeness.”

With its established, successful urban outreach partnerships in New York City, American Bible Society is moving into its third century by prayerfully designing a plan to extend its ministry throughout the United States.

One of American Bible Society’s third century goals includes increasing meaningful domestic Scripture engagement from its current number of 48 million people to 100 million. In two years, American Bible Society will launch its reinvigorated city Scripture engagement program in 10 strategic metropolitan areas. By 2026, American Bible Society hopes to secure a strong ministerial foothold in 100 U.S. cities.

“Engaging with partners that focus on Gospel-centric movements is not only exciting, but one of the most strategic things American Bible Society can do as it moves toward its third century,” adds Dr. Caterson.

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