It was a hot summer evening in New Hampshire. I was sitting cross-legged on the floor of the sanctuary of my internship congregation. Tied to my right wrist was an orange bandana. Surrounding me was my tribe, about fifteen energized third and fourth graders. On second thought, energized might be an understatement. It was the end of Vacation Bible School, and the curriculum we were using invited us to ask the kids for their “God sightings,” that is,
“Becoming missional will save the church.”
Whether we want to admit it or not, many mainline pastors and denominations are banking on this idea. In our race to become missional, we have allowed some key assumptions to endure that are actually roadblocks to renewal.
Missional Assumption 1:
Becoming missional should be our priority
Missional Reality 1:
Developing disciples should be our priority
This assumption is not bad. In fact, becoming a missional congregation
By Brigitte Leininger
The corporate world is learning to embrace failure, turning it into a positive exploration of opportunity. This article explores the newfound mentality of what it means to fail in the secular workspace, and what that same type of failure means for the church. Is it possible to look at failure in the same way -- a source for new opportunity, or is it simply another way our sinful nature is manifested in our work?
Failure: Opportunity or Human Brokenness?
Failure. Defeat. Catastrophe.
By Kristin Eisele
When I was seven years old my parents brought home a new set of dishes. It was awful. It was
. I cried. When we changed cars, when I had to get a new winter coat, when my favorite television program was canceled, I cried. Imagine my enthusiasm at the change required of the church in this era.
And yet, I really do want to be a part of what God is up to. Reflecting on my resistance to change along with my desire to be a part of God’s mission, I began to identify specific
Courtney Young is a graduate of Luther Seminary - M.Div. with an emphasis in Congregational Mission and Leadership. Missional, a Millennial, and a new mother, Courtney shares her thoughts with us here:
In the spring of my senior year at
, I took a course called "Transforming Congregations for Mission," taught by Mary Sue Dreier. The class launched both a deep and broad conversation among my classmates and me about how to help churches sharpen their practices and theology so