The Open Table — Kansas City, Missouri
The Open Table is a two-year-old dinner church in Kansas City, Missouri – a community of peace and reconciliation in a city divided. Our twice-monthly gatherings include a meal, music and conversation led by local speakers. The dialogical format ensures diverse voices are heard, and similar to the early church, our meal is Communion. Our partners include Second Presbyterian Church (our parent congregation), Heartland Presbytery and 1001 New Worshipping Communities.
Last fall, following a divisive election cycle and an increase in hate crimes, we responded by hosting a gathering on the topic of “Disrupting Racism.” Over 150 people came to the meal and skill-building workshops. A couple of young adults who attended said, “If this is church, I’m in!”
We were one of five organizations to receive a $50,000 Leadership Development Grant from Duke Divinity School this summer. The funds will be used on a project in collaboration with local community organizers to create a contextualized curriculum on race that churches can use as a resource as we seek to be God’s beloved community at the table together.
—Wendie Brockhaus, assistant curator (theopentablekc.com)
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