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Links for June 29, 2006

Phil Nellis has an interesting post here about how ideas have left being in the context of relationship. This is really interesting, you need to read it. It’s only a short post.
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All dogs go to heaven. But not homosexuals. Or divorced people. Or people who masturbate. Read more here
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I have just joined a new website network called the Daily Scribe. It is a collection of religious blogs from all over the world. It seems so far also like a good mix of voices. It is quite organized and is set up with featured posts and all kinds of other cool tools and features.
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One of the featured posts on the Daily Scribe is a post about the idea of evil. Read it here. It is really well written.
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Ryan Bolger has a great post on why we shouldn’t do church for people.

A missional congregation connects with those outside the faith by, well, connecting with those outside of the community in their world. Connecting happens not in a ‘come to us’ CHURCH service, but through ‘go and dwell’ church SERVICE, i.e. service in the community — living alternative lives.

A focus on the service as connecting point perpetuates the sacred/secular split of modernity. When the bulk of the community’s energy goes to maintaining a church service, it implies that the church service is more holy, more important, more worthy of our time than the everyday practice of our spirituality.

A focus on the service as connecting point perpetuates the clergy/laity split — there are those who ‘do’ ministry for everyone else. Instead, the role of the leaders is to facilitate the worship expression of the community as a whole.

A focus on the service as connecting point perpetuates the producer/consumer form of spirituality — those on paid or volunteer staff produce spiritual products for passive spectators to consume. Instead, the church must create a context for the community production of worship — we consume as we produce…

Click here to read it all.

One Comment

  • I really like this little bit from Bolger:

    “The worship service is no longer an evangelistic service for outsiders but a space to practice heaven for a period of time, facilitating the offering of the community life to God in worship.”

    It sounds like an argument for a very “high-church” practice that connects directly with intensive mission. If the focus of the woship service is on practicing heaven, then the Eucharist would be at its centre, and everything would flow from there.

    In Christ’s self-breaking, and in our participation in that, through communion, we see ourselves implicated, that is, Christ’s body, in perpetual self-breaking for the good of the world.

    The challenge, or at least one challenge to that, is that people attending worship services need to be convinced that the service is not necessarily for them, but for the glory of God and for the love of this broken world.