A Place To Lay Their Heads

A Place to Lay Their Heads is a biblically based curriculum on inadequate housing in rural North Carolina by the North Carolina Council of Churches and Habitat for Humanity (2004).

From the Introduction:

During the spiritual journey that is the life of a Christian, each one of you involved in this study has come to the conclusion that part of being a follower of Christ is paying attention to the housing needs of all of God’s children. Some of you may be more aware of the problem of inadequate housing in your part of North Carolina than are the people who developed this study. Others of you had your interest peaked simply by the hands-on nature of FaithWorks, the rural home-building project of Habitat for Humanity and the North Carolina Council of Churches. Wherever you come into this study, you will find in its pages and in the discussions that result a biblical witness to the problem of inadequate housing.

We begin the study by looking at the issue of inadequate housing in general, and we end by addressing the broader subjects of justice and advocacy. In between, we will look at three specific issues tied to inadequate housing: wages and why working hard is not enough, health and how it and housing are interwoven, and broad economic issues causing job loss in rural North Carolina. Throughout, your group will be encouraged to share your stories, questions and challenges with each other.

By looking at the issues through God’s eyes and with God’s word in our midst we can learn both the underlying issues related to inadequate housing and our Christian response. This curriculum is designed for use by congregations taking part in FaithWorks, but it can be used by anyone concerned with housing needs in rural areas. In addition to this student edition, a teacher’s guide for group leaders is also available.

Several acknowledgements are in order. Amy Grunewald Mattison, a student at Duke Divinity School, wrote the first draft of this curriculum. Pam Campbell, curriculum consultant with Habitat for Humanity International, made subsequent revisions. George Reed, executive director of the NC Council of Churches, provided additional writing and final editing. Aleta Payne, communications associate with the NC Council of Churches, completed the layout. Funds for printing and distribution of the curriculum have been provided by The Duke Endowment, which is also providing generous support for the home-building part of FaithWorks.

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