Base Communities

In the 2011-2012 academic year, one of the objectives of the Romero Leadership Project is to study in-depth the Christian base communities.

In March, we chose to address the following questions and areas of study about the Base Communities. In March 29th's meeting (7-9pm in the Poverty Initiative Office), each of the following people will present their learnings from the following readings. Each presentation will be 10 to 15 minutes with discussion after all the presentations. Please bring copies of any written notes/outlines you make to share with the group.

Each of us should take a look at this document FIRST for help defining different acronyms for the base communities and for great links to base community websites: Healey, Acronyms and Online Resources


  • How have these base communities established “movements of movements”, linking nationally and internationally?
  • How have base communities been part of ecumenical and/or inter-religious work?

Burdick, Rethinking Social Movements
Drogus, Catholics and Pentecostals
Healey and Hinton, Base Comunities in Coordination and Communication
Adam's Notes on Drogus and Burdick readings, March 29, 2012


  • How do we share with communities today lessons from these base communities, so that Christian communities today can conceive their identities in the lineages of these communities, and learn from the base communities’ lessons and work?

Hinton, Development of SCCs in world
Pixley and Boff, Bible in Latin America
Melissa's Notes on Hinton article and Pixley and Boff article, March 29, 2012


  • Did the base communities give rise for the need for Vatican II, or did the base communities start with Vatican II? Study communities and church pre-Vatican II ?
  • Relaunching base communities today

Nagle, The Struggle to Be Church
Nagle, Struggle of the Morro de Conceicao, Chpt 7 of Burdick and Hewitt
Jenn's Notes on Nagle and Levine


  • Conscientización and formación as fundamental shifts otherwise unparalleled in society and church.
  • How base communities transitioned from past system of church: Real concrete way that base communities changed the structure, function, and theology of the Latin American church

Boff, Theological Characteristics of a Grassroots Church
Sabia, Popular Church in Nicaragua


  • What is the difference between base communities and “small groups” in churches today?
  • Base communities and the Bible

Healey and Hinton, US and Europe
Canin, Managua's Base Communities, Chpt 8 of Burdick and Hewitt