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Research reports

Restorative revolution: Report

A paper on Tearfund’s vision and recommendations for a restorative economy

2023

Cover illustration of the Restorative Revolution report
An illustration of a mixed group of people wlkaing from a broken down area towards a fertile looking village

From: Restorative revolution

A movement of the church to transform wealth, power and communities for a flourishing world

Tearfund’s vision, ideas and recommendations for a restorative economy draws on wide, international consultation with partners and allies around the world. At its heart, Restorative revolution is an invitation to see hundreds of thousands of churches act as a global movement and find their place in God’s restoration story. 

Summary

What stories will be told of the 21st century? This is a pivotal moment for churches and Christians to come together, secure in the Creator’s love for us, to recover our place in God’s restoration story and to realise our collective power to shape a fairer future. A flourishing world where each of us has the economic agency and power to meet our basic needs while protecting the earth’s life-support systems.This is the restorative economy.

The current economic system is accelerating inequality and the breakdown of God’s world which we all rely on. It is marked by extreme wealth and exclusive power, built partly on the legacy of slavery and colonialism.

Wealth and power have been connected throughout human history. But we need to reckon with the scale and scope of how they are currently intertwined, enlarged and guarded at the expense of the majority – and those living in poverty most of all.

The root of all of this is humanity’s ancient problem: peace was interrupted and broken when sin entered the world. Our relationships were broken – with God, with ourselves, with each other and with the rest of creation. And the fruit of this includes broken systems, greed, corrupt governance, injustice, colonialism, dehumanisation and a failure to value the whole of creation. This is the disorder we find ourselves in and contributing to, with varying degrees of complicity and choice.

But this brokenness is not God’s plan. This moment which looks full of difficulty and hopelessness is a critical window for stories of redemption, reconciliation and restoration to be enacted.

This is an invitation to churches and Christians around the world to re-covenant with God, ourselves, each other and creation. To rediscover our place in God’s ongoing redemption story. To break free of the narratives that have commodified or colonised us, and to recover our stories and roles as prophets in this world.

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