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Excerpt: "On a rainy early spring morning in a modest brick Presbyterian church just outside the Fruitvale neighborhood of Oakland, California, sixtyfour worshippers gather. The entire worship is in Spanish. During the sermon, the pastor makes a passing reference to how few of the attenders now live in Oakland proper, that many have to drive farther than ever for church services. The implicit message: the leadership of the church realizes that gentrification of San Francisco has spilled over the Bay Bridge and now threatens the availability of affordable housing throughout Oakland. In response, the congregation has started programs that offer legal advice for responding to rent-hiking landlords and identifying housing options around the city. Though resources and attenders tend to be somewhat scarce, the leadership has creatively organized in an effort to address the structural and policy concerns of housing. Beyond that, the pastor proudly notes that this church readily offers immigration status services, computer classes, and English classes."


Originally published as chapter six, "Latino Protestants and Their Political and Social Engagement", pages 101-132, of Latino Protestants in America: Growing and Diverse, by Mark T. Mulder, Aida I. Ramos, and Gerardo Marti, 2017, reproduced by permission of Rowman & Littlefield. All rights reserved. Please contact the publisher for permission to copy, distribute or reprint.