Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)


This mixed-methods study performed among six congregations explored how the historical framework, fabric, and focus of the Black Church have changed throughout a modern/postmodern context. An exploratory approach was used to study congregations identified by a 10-person pastoral focus group using methods of interviews and questionnaires. This researcher hypothesized that the social gospel dimensions and prophetic radicalism of the historic Black Church have diminished, but that it might reestablish itself as a pillar in the community through a retrieval of its prophetic voice and social gospel roots which caused it to be missional-minded and civically-engaged. It is anticipated that this perspective will assist the Black Church in reclamation of its heritage by confirming its purpose and affirming its position within the missional context that God has placed it.