Churches: Laboratory for the Future

Many Protestant theologians are convinced that the conventional parish is no longer suited to the missionary needs of the modern city. But what should take its place? One answer is provided by Chicago's Ecumenical Institute—a cooperative community of laymen and ministers that regards itself as a "research and training center" for the church of the future.

Founded in 1957, the Ecumenical Institute now operates out of a former Church of the Brethren seminary on Chicago's West Side. It has a resident community of 185—105 adults, the rest children and teen-agers—who live together in apartment buildings belonging to the institute. Each couple...

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