This is a great article and it really captures the heart of why I long to see Jacob's Well grow up in an urban community. Though I really don't agree with much of John S. Spong's theology or probably his political point of view either, I still think this is an excellent article on how to live out your theology practically as a community of believers in the area that you worship God.
They will rebuild the ancient ruins, They will raise up the former devastation's; and they will repair the ruined cities, the desolation's of many generations. -Isaiah 61:4
How does this happen?
It first and foremost begins in seeing the "new creation" take place in the human heart. True community transformation takes place from the inside out. A changed heart leads to a changed family, which can lead to a changed community. Light dispels darkness...addictions, dysfunction, character issues, brokeness and deeply ingrained sinful life controlling patterns all can become undone in the presence of a loving God, a Spirit empowered church and a grace filled gospel.
But it also happens through the simple path of good works. A church that understands that it is in the community for the community as a visible and touchable expression of the love, compassion and justice of God; will be a fruitful expression of God's redemptive power.
I long to see the Lord restore the "Crown of Beauty" to our cities. (Isaiah 62:3 & 61:3)