Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Church Trends
Two questions in my mind today, which I have blogged about in passing before:
i) Has the trend for churches employing paid youth workers/ministers plateaued and is now declining?
ii) Has the trend for"youth church" and planting church in youth culture and among teenagers largely dwindled too (being replaced by "emerging church" and other emphasis)?

Both seem to be happening from a "gut feel", chatting to people perspective, but I've no empirical evidence. 5 years ago both things were definately on the agenda, I'm just not sure they are now...

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Friday, September 19, 2008

Essential Shopping?
Just found this site with some fantastic "I am a Baptist" merchandise: tshirts, hoodies and more.
What more could you want?
Even this Baptist Bear!!!!
Maybe this year my colleagues at the London Baptist Association will get a Christmas present...

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Tuesday, September 16, 2008

Leadership and Control
Not processed much or posted much around leadership for a while.
But have seen a few things where leadership ends up looking like power and control, rather than leadership. Always a danger for us I think, and for me I see that in the Baptist context it can sometimes result in one person having a lot of power/responsibility, so much so that it becomes their identity (and it is often not the minister).

Len is helpful as ever, in a recent post on leadership and listening.
Quick quote:
'“leadership” itself has become almost useless as a word, carrying the awkward baggage of modernity and hierarchy, managerial measures and technocratic traffic; at its worst “command and control"'.

He goes on to talk about leadership as a process, not a "heroic individual", which is very helpful.

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Saturday, September 13, 2008

All Age?
Good day down in Balham today looking at All Age: Family Services and Beyond.
As well as theory and some practical ideas and experiences shared, this afternoon we did a service as a kind of "worked example" and then debriefed. I think it worked and my fear that it would be some kind of strange role play rather than a real expression of worship was misplaced as people entered into it.
I think that some inclusive act of worship that brings all ages together can be done and be powerful, it's just that when it's done badly and becomes "stunt at the front" it puts people off.

And it was nice to dust off the guitar - realise I haven't played it for a while!

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Thursday, September 04, 2008

This graphic amused me.
I'll reserve making comment at this stage...
I found it at Way of the Master

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Wednesday, September 03, 2008

More random links
A few links worth looking at:
Dave Gilpin: "Holy Crapola" Some great thoughts on faith, miracles etc.from a "contemporary church" type pastor (hope that's not an insult to the man!) especially in the light of the summer's events down in Florida. Here's a quote:
"It’s time to say no to nonsense and silliness and create a faith life that’s filled with the real deal of how God actually operates and wants to operate in the twenty first century"

Andy Goodliff on "10 Books every Baptist Minister should read". I'll confess now I haven't read many on his list, but it did get me wondering what would be on my list, and maybe one day I'll get round to posting that...

And finally a less serious one - showing my age. Here's a video link to an ad. for a long lost chocolate biscuit. Plus if you're a biscuit fan this site is essential

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Tuesday, September 02, 2008

5 fold?
I've not read too much by Frank Viola, but I know he's quite popular with some in thinking about organic church etc.
Just read his thoughts on "5 fold ministry" and apostles - it's a helpful article (here), especially the first bit describing the history of the notion of "restoring the gifts".
Not sure I buy into his "organic vs organisation" type contrast, although I should probably read more before judging (but it did remind me a bit of some of the stuff by Gene Edwards).

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