church

Episode 1: Tickle and Women and Mark, oh my

Robb and Vanessa kickoff the new Fundamorphosis podcast by talking about Phyllis Tickle and feminism, interviewing Mark Scandrette, and answering listeners’ questions.

Local, Organic, Pasture-Fed Sacred Cows Make the Best Hamburgers: Killing Our Small Group Ministry

I can barely contain my excitement about our new round of Experimental Collectives at Vintage. (I’ve written about them before herehere, here, and here.)

A little background: We had a traditional small group ministry – 8 or 10 people doing a Bible study together every other week. We realized that it was just boring and not really connecting with where we were at. We came to think that what people in our community need is not more knowledge of the Bible. What we need is more opportunity to put our knowledge to work. We need more activity, practice, and doing.   Read More…

Some Reflections on the Emergence Christianity National Gathering with Phyllis Tickle

This weekend, Vanessa and I attended the Emergence Christianity National Gathering, a conference/book party to celebrate the publishing of Phyllis Tickle‘s new book Emergence Christianity. Phyllis is a singular person in American Christianity. Because of her keen mind and unique experience, she has been able to best document the fundamental changes that have been occurring in the church over the past several decades. I’m fond of calling her the fairy godmother of the emergent church.   Read More…

Be a Good Christian. Disagree with Your Pastor.

Growing up in church, I was always conscious of what constituted a “good Christian.” The fundamentalist churches I grew up in had a lot of rules against which we could judge ourselves (and others). We couldn’t go to movies or drink alcohol or wear jeans to worship services. And we were taught that good Christians conformed. We were not to conform to the world, but we were supposed to conform to each other.

The fundamentalism of my youth always seemed to push us toward homogeny. People were expected to dress in similar ways, to have similar haircuts, to talk the same way, to use the same version of the Bible. And this push for homogeny went deeper. We all had the same worldview, voted for the same candidates, and believed the same things about God, humanity, and life. Read More…

My Resolution for the Church in America

New Year’s resolutions are the grace of God. Granted, many of us make them, and we often fail miserably. And yet, with the turn of the calendar each twelve months, we are given a chance to evaluate, reconsider, and commit ourselves to act differently, to try something new, to be who we have only dreamed of being. We can choose to abandon something that has outgrown its usefulness and embrace new things that would be beneficial to us. It is the grace of God that we can become, change, develop, evolve.

This year, I’m making a New Year’s resolution for the church. From the presidential election to the Chick-Fil-A debacle, the Facebookization of American Christianity in 2012 needs to be evaluated and reconsidered. I’m thinking that we need to commit ourselves to act differently. I’m thinking there is something we need to abandon.

My 2013 New Year’s resolution for the church is that we would abandon the Remnant Mentality. Read More…

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