There are many ways of defining a neighborhood, but the simplest is that it is a collection of homes. In The Listening Life, spiritual director Adam S. McHugh recommends walking through your neighborhood in a spirit of inquiry, a practice he learned from Michael Mata, director of the Transformation Urban Leadership program at Azusa Pacific Seminary. Ask questions like these about the homes in your immediate community, including your own: What kinds of houses do people live in? Is there a sense that people are welcome here? What political signs or billboards do you notice? What are their messages? What do you hear? What languages are people speaking? What are their ages? Ethnic backgrounds? Do you hear children? Who are authority figures? Are there police? Is their presence welcome? What is this neighborhood saying to you?

Habib Todd Boerger, Adam S. McHugh, Michael Mata in Practicing Democracy in Your Neighborhood by Habib Todd Boerger