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The cross means more than we've let it mean. Proclaiming the gospel and forming the faithful: these are the most practiced disciplines of the evangelical church. As central as these disciplines are, however, they are only part of the story. And as Christian Community Development Association CEO Noel Castellanos has learned over a lifetime of ministry and mission, the neglect of the gospel's full implications for the world has contributed to the erosion of communities and the languishing of poor and other marginalized people. In Where the Cross Meets the Street Castellanos shows the strengths and limitations of a narrowly focused church and broadens our imaginations to embrace a gospel that proclaims Christ and forms disciples. This life-giving gospel also demonstrates compassion, confronts injustice and restores individuals and communities to wholeness. This is the whole work of the cross; this is the privilege of those who follow the Word made flesh.
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"[Through our] relationship with Noel, we have grown tremendously in our understanding of others living in the margins of our society. Noel helped us to move from a black/white association toward a more full expression of the American experience of Asian, Native American, Latinos and being more inclusive towards the great diversity we have in America. His voice has been a tremendous asset to CCDA, the body of Christ and God's kingdom. . . . We are sure that you will learn much and be encouraged to live out your faith in new and different ways by reading this book."--From the Foreword by John Perkins and Wayne Gordon "Noel is a leader of the times and a champion of the practitioner. This book takes twenty-five plus years of experience and gives us lessons and testimony to how CCDA brings the cross alive and makes it relevant today."--Leroy Barber, global executive director, Word Made Flesh "Any Christian leader in any city in the United States can draw biblical foundations and practical interventions from Noel's timely book. His story encapsulates the recent histories of the Christian Community Development movement and the diversification of leadership in evangelical America. This book is a must read for any leader plotting the engagement of the church in our culture over the next decade."--Rudy Carrasco, partnersworldwide.org "As someone who has ministered among the urban poor for the last fifteen years, this is the book I wish I had in my hands when I started. Noel Castellanos is an elite urban theologian, practitioner and dear friend to those on the margins. I have learned so much from Noel these past ten years and am thrilled he has accomplished the mighty task of putting his insight and experience into writing. My prayer is that this book will become incarnate in you as you incarnate the grace, truth and future of Jesus to those you serve."--John Teter, church planting team leader, Evangelical Covenant Church "Where the Cross Meets the Street reads like a novel. I couldn't put it down. With candor, humility and humor, Noel invites his readers to accompany him on his personal journey from obscure poverty to national prominence. The book is both emotionally touching and prophetically convicting. Inspiring."--Bob Lupton, author of Toxic Charity and founder of FCS Urban Ministries "The book reads like a modern day gospel story it is very personal, intimate, engaging, challenging and through real stories of life presents the affirming and transformative power of Christian witness. It reads like a good novel, but it is profound theology at its best!"--Virgilio Elizondo, professor of pastoral and Hispanic theology, University of Notre Dame" "If you're tired of a disengaged Christianity, Where the Cross Meets the Street is the book for you. More than a book, it's an invitation to a journey of transformation and maturity. Noel, in sharing his own journey with us, calls us to a gritty and incarnational faith that forces us to see Christ in unexpected places. I found myself saying, 'Amen!' out loud. Every generation of Christians needs genuine street prophets in Noel we have one."--Gabriel Salguero, president, National Latino Evangelical Coalition" "Noel Castellanos not only preaches and teaches on a holistic ministry of evangelism and community development, he embodies it. Noel's story, told through this timely and significant book, will encourage and challenge Christians everywhere to engage in the ministry of the hope of the cross lived out in the street. Through his life story, his ministry, his leadership of CCDA and now through this text, Noel Castellanos offers the possibility of a vibrant Christian faith not contained by the walls of a church building."--Soong-Chan Rah, author of The Next Evangelicalism "Part memoir. Part Bible study (in the best sense). Part training guide in community development. Part invitation to revolution. Noel Castellanos is one of the most influential leaders in the country guiding one of the most beautiful movements in the world, CCDA. I am honored to call him a friend and teacher . . . and many of us have been waiting for this book a long time."--Shane Claiborne, author and activist "Where the Cross Meets the Street is a truly inspiring testimony to all that God can do in our lives, our barrios and our country. Noel Castellanos has provided us with a rich resource for ministry particularly for those of us who motivate and guide young leaders, who seek to encourage and empower impoverished communities and who hope for a church that is faithful to the incarnate Lord by practicing mision integral (holistic mission). It's also a wonderfully fun and easy read. I couldn't put it down."--Alexia Salvatierra, pastor, consultant, author of Faith-Rooted Organizing" "Some people have trouble relating to God. Many, like Castellanos used to, may feel as if God doesn't have time and doesn't care about them because He doesn't like them. Throughout this book, Castellanos shares stories of his life and ministry. While most of his experiences with Christians during his early years were with white people, he had to come to the realization that God loves more than just white people. The good news is it is often the overlooked and the rejected that hold a special place in the Savior's heart. But, as the Bible says, those people will never hear without a preacher. In order to make a difference for Christ, believers must be willing to get involved with people and truly be interested in their lives where they are. Christians must expand their reach by going to 'undesirable' places. Castellanos encourages readers to reach out to those on the margins of society."--Ruth O'Neil, CBA Retailers + Resources, March 2015 "The book, part memoir, is a fascinating read. Throughout, Noel shares his own story, using it to emphasize how and why he became involved in community development. . . . I greatly appreciated Noel's willingness to share his heritage and story throughout this book, along with the joys and challenges Mexican immigrants face. . . . As a youth pastor and Christian committed to Jesus and social justice, I have no doubt that Where the Cross Meets the Street is a book I will refer to and recommend often."--Jen Bradbury, YouthWorker Journal, March 12, 2015 "This book is a good introduction to a life and culture that is not easy to understand. I recommend this book to ministry leaders and urban community developers. It is a door to an interesting journey of the Latina/o experience in the urban context and for that it is valuable in its own right."--Martin Navarro, New Urban World 4, no. 1 (2015) "In his candid description of both the rewards and failures he's experienced, Castellanos shows us why God's love for those at the margins a love demonstrated on the cross should be the center of every Christian's life."--Plough Quarterly, Summer 2015"

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