Posts Tagged ‘ emerging church ’

Why We Care About Mark Driscoll

A couple days ago, I wrote a blog post about Mark Driscoll. No big deal. In nearly ten years of blogging, I’ve written something like 1,200 posts, and a handful of them have mentioned Mark – some in a positive way, and others not so much. But this one was different. It hit a nerve with some people. Well over ten percent of the page views that I’ve gotten in the past 28 months have come in the past three days since that post went live.* I feel a bit dirty right now. Like I need a shower. I just got out of the shower, though, and I still feel dirty. I don’t regret anything I wrote – I stand by all of it. Mark Driscoll is a very gifted communicator. He’s funny, he’s culturally savvy, he has a quick mind, he takes theology very seriously. Though this may shock […]



Loving Religion, The Atheist Way

I wasn’t planning to jump on the bandwagon of those who have watched the viral video about loving Jesus, but hating religion (which got 15 million views in its first 10 days). Not only are lots of people watching it, they’re blogging about it, from a number of angles. I’ve cynically smirked at several emerging church bloggers, because of the conundrum the video puts them (us?) in. On the one hand, they’ve been deconstructing and sniping at the religion side of Jesus-following for the past ten+ years.  On the other hand, two things are happening – first, many emerging church folks have been at the deconstruction/reimagining thing long enough to have learned that the institutions of religion aren’t all bad all the time after all; and second, even if they agree with the sentiments of the video, the viral “success” of the video means they’re not on the hipster fringe […]



Saying Goodbye to Off the Map

My friend Jim Henderson has posted the news that Off the Map, a project he started with some friends a dozen years ago, is going to walk off into the sunset. OTM hosted a number of events that were gathering places for a wide range of people over the years. The conferences were a great mix of the usual emerging church celebrities, and people I had never heard of before. One thing I’ve admired about Jim since the time I met him is his ability to identify people who are good thinkers and practitioners, but who have gone unnoticed by others. He “finds” these people, and just sticks a microphone in their hands . . . sometimes without asking permission! For all the conferences and events I’ve attended over the past ten years, Off the Map was far and away my favorite place to just hang out with people. There […]



The Emerging Church – A Movement Worth Talking About

This post is part 2 of my thoughts on Why The Emerging Church Still Matters. I won’t recap part 1 here, other than to say that despite the fading prominence of the emerging church in conference topics, blog posts, and common church conversations, I still think it’s worth talking about. Growing up in USAmerican evangelicalism, one of the running jokes in churches was that ‘the church’ was also 10-20 years behind cultural trends. Music, fashion, politics, and other topics would pop up in church circles well after they’d gone stale everywhere else. I’d like to suggest that the emerging church actually represents not just a “catching up with culture,” but a bit of a reversal of the game. Without attempting a full history of the movement, let me just suggest some of the hallmarks of the emerging church thus far: It’s a movement made up primarily of no-name people, who […]



Why the Emerging Church Still Matters (part 1)

In my last post, I gave a brief review of an excellent book, and I made the statement that I’m not ready to jump off the emerging church bandwagon. I still have my areas of ambivalence, and those are probably worth a few posts on their own. But I do think that, while the emerging church may not be the flavor of the month with the hipsters any more, to pronounce the death of it would be premature. First, a word of clarification. When I use the term emerging church, I do so in a broad, inclusive sense. There was a time when one of our buzzwords was “conversations,” and I liked the fact that a wide variety of voices were heard – including (especially?) the voices of those I disagreed with. The way I see it, if you want to talk about the emerging church, congratulations, you’re a member […]



The Emerging Church – Does Anyone Still Care?

This post is for all my readers who still care about the Emerging Church . . . I hope both of you enjoy it. But seriously, folks, I’ve got some thoughts. Over the past few months, I’ve seen a number of blog posts, tweets, and Facebook status updates along the lines of “I used to affiliate with the emerging church, but I’m not so sure I do any more.” Granted, most of them are much more cleverly worded, but it would seem that the thrift stores in many U.S. cities will soon be receiving higher than normal donations of tea light holders, dark-rimmed glasses, English flat caps, and Celtic cross wall hangings. The bandwagon is getting a little lonely. As someone who has run in these circles for over ten years now, and has at various times felt a bit of ambivalence about my own involvement, I can understand the […]



A Seattle Tribute

I sit in an apartment surrounded by boxes, along with other items that will soon be in boxes. It’s reality check time. In less than two weeks (which is six years and eight months after I arrived in the Seattle area) I will leave this city. Not forever, but for a long time. And even though I’m not necessarily leaving Seattle for good, it has left good in me. I could write in a number of different directions about the things I’ve loved and will miss about living here, but here are five: Seattle is globally aware. Many cities in the U.S. have a large mix of people groups living in them, but few are as consciously connected to issues and events around the world as Seattlites. I can have conversations about financial aid to Africa, food shortages, Burmese monks, or Bollywood stars with people at the produce market, park, […]



Daniel Blue Live at The Round

I haven’t really blogged about my community of faith here in Seattle, but as the time for me to be away from it approaches, I want to acknowledge the good folks at Church of the Apostles (COTA). I’ll write more about the church itself in another post, but one of the many beautiful things to come out of this quirky little band of God-chasers is a separate, non-religious non-profit organization called the Fremont Abbey Arts Center. Concerts, dance recitals, music lessons, and community events all take place at the Fremont Abbey. In fact, COTA, while being the “owner” of the Abbey, is only a minority user of it these days. Every month, the Abbey puts on its signature event, called The Round. A few musical artists/bands, poets, and visual artists all share the stage together, creating art that is engaging, interactive, and intimate. It’s been going for over six years […]



Review: The Outsider Interviews

I just finished a quick read through The Outsider Interviews, by Jim Henderson, Todd Hunter, and Craig Spinks.* It’s billed as a “DVB,” meaning that it’s a book and a DVD together. The DVD has a large number of video clips that are referenced throughout the chapters of the book. I would guess that if this were to be published a year or two from now, the iPad and Kindle versions of the book would integrate the video clips straight into the text. While I read about half of the book away from a TV or computer, I was able to read the other half while sitting next to my computer, and followed the cues to watch the clips. The content of the DVB was largely driven off of the authors’ interaction with material presented in the book unChristian, by David Kinnaman and Gabe Lyons. That book presents a lot […]



Reading: A Habit I’ve Returned To

Yesterday, I spent a few minutes updating my Books page. Over the past few weeks, I seem to have gotten my reading mojo back, after a pretty long hiatus. After a few years of reading like mad for school, I was forced to basically stop reading in order to focus on writing my doctoral dissertation, which took most of my time between August 2008 and March 2009. Once I crossed that finish line, I went almost completely dormant in the literary sense. I’m not sure if it was burnout, but I apparently felt the need for a break. I read very little in what remained of 2009. Even while flying all over the world, spending a ridiculous amount of time on airplanes, I only managed to read one book on my smart phone’s Kindle app. But as quickly as my book lust went away, it seems to have returned. This […]