Monday, December 30, 2002

A New Year!



Soon it will be a New Year. This year I have come along ways. I feel as if God has been getting me ready to do his work. Blogging has been a great learning tool. Reading all of what other people are going through and then learning from them and sharing what God has been doing in my life. I feel as if I have started to make some really great foundations on which to build for the future. KingdomSpace and all those who are on this team have been key. I especially want to thank Kevin Rains, Alan Creech, Jason Evans, Chris Smith, John O' Keefe, Chris Alford, John and Sidney Wallis, and a few unknowns for their encouragement,prayers,and wisdom. You guys are a great rag-tag bunch of God's people. I love you. And hope I have the pleasure of meeting you in person. Have a great New Year of being God's People.


Sunday, December 29, 2002

Inflatable Church

Presenting the worlds first Inflatable Church! Available for purchase or rent, this church can be set up on a vacant piece of land near you!





'This fantastic air filled building is 47ft long by 25ft wide & 47ft high. The attention to detail is heavenly complete with plastic "stained glass" windows, airbrush artwork which replicates the traditional church. Inside it has an inflatable organ, altar, pulpit, pews, candles and a gold cross. Even the doors are flanked by air-filled angels. The church can be built in three hours and dis-assembled in less than two'



Revolutionary stuff! A step towards incarnational mission - No longer will we expect people to have to come to us, we can just pick up and go straight to them!

Its not that different to a lot of churches I've visited over the years though....must take plenty of hot air to keep it going!

On the up side - no more long and torturous building projects!

Thursday, December 26, 2002

In the 24-7 prayer guide of operation world (see Andrews entry below) they write that 50 % of the active Christians in my country Germany are 50 years or older. In the next 30 years most of them will have moved to the other side of the line....leaving an even smaller number of Christians - unless we learn to make church relevant for people living NOW....

Tuesday, December 24, 2002

steve might be worth you checking the pack 'born among us' produced by uspg - has some images of the incarnation from down under as well as elsewhere. and there are a few carols/worship items very definitely from the southern hemisphere. it's available from USPG.

happy christmas all you bloggers....!

if you are in the mood for a couple of seasonal reflections have a look at vaux greyspace. in particular i like the magnificat, divine womb and the reflection on the incarnation.

Monday, December 23, 2002

Summer Jesus downunder (warning: long rant)
The Word became human being and … lived among us. Which means that Jesus grew up a Jew, telling Jewish jokes with Jewish accents, playing Jewish sports and Jewish music and hearing Jewish stories of origins. The word became human and … lived among us Jews.

However, 2000 years later, Jesus Jewishness seems to have been lost. I remember vividly a Chinese man in Canton, China telling me that Jesus was a Westerner. And so, over time, this Jewish baby has become wrapped, not in Jewish swandling cloth, but in holly and mistletoe, in snow and Santa. The word became human and .. lived among a Northern hemisphere.

Please hear me, there’s nothing wrong with that. In fact, that’s what the Word is meant to do. It’s meant to dwell in the culture around it. John Drane talks about the Word being a seed, planted, that grows in another culture. Jesus needs to take root in Jewish soil, in American or English soil.

The danger is not that Jesus grows in Northern Hemisphere soil, but that Jesus is given to the world as the Northern Hemisphereness Word. In reality the Christmas message asks for the Word to dwell among us, for the seed planted in the land of the long white cloud, for God to dwell among Kiwis.

Take for instance the Church year. The church year includes 4 weeks of Advent, leading up to Christmas. Now, in the Northern Hemisphere, this all gets tied up with the longest night. The earth is dark and frozen. The body cries out for sun and for warmth. Then just after the longest night, when the cry of light is loudest, comes the birth of Jesus. Hope dawns. Days start to lengthen. Summer will come. And so the earth’s rythms are mixed with the birth of Jesus.

If Jesus is a Northern Hemisphere Jesus, wrapped in Northern Hemisphere symbols and rythms, then it will be easy to leave Jesus behind as we head for the beach and the barby.

Downunder we celebrate Advent and Christmas in summer. Our light is long. The days are warm and humid. We’re all closing down for our summer holidays. These rythym’s of earth need to get mixed up with the birth of Jesus. And so the birth of Jesus is about us in the South entering our annual Sabbath rest. It’s about God mixed with play, for on the 7th day God rested. It’s about the full warmth and vigour of creation. This Jesus who comes to us as God ablaze with energy and with power to renew the cosmos. This Word became human being and … needs to live among us [Kiwis].

May the Word, who became human being, truly live among us this Southern Hemisphere Christmas.

in-out-together

Spencer Burke has posted a great article on the Church at theOOZE.com:
The present incarnation of Christ is the church. We are not alone in our struggles, nor are we the only ones walking the "labyrinth." Whether we are part of a house church or a mega church, we are ultimately part of THE church. Budgets, formulas, programs—they're incidental. If the focus of the emerging church is just three things: the inward journey, the outward journey and journeying together, we have a common, unifying bond. [read more]

Tuesday, December 17, 2002

Plastic: Hot Breath Down Your Neck? Maybe It's Jesus

Matthew Glock in France says that Jesus is all over the Plastic site "Scratching your head in bewilderment at the plethora of Jesus stories currently running here on Plastic?" asks ignatiusreilly." Sick of debating what He would do (for a Klondike bar, on a first date, etc.)? Drink? Drive? Starting to feel like Jesus is everywhere? Well, He is"

Sunday, December 15, 2002

Saturday, December 14, 2002

ACCIDENTAL COMMUNITY: Jason Evans is on track with his ruminations about living in close-enough proximity to your church members that you can spend a quantity of time with them, not just quality time.

Friday, December 13, 2002

Wednesday, December 11, 2002

Synergy
The anglican minister phoned yesterday. The community I'm part of, Graceway have been exploring moving from a rented hall to their church as a place to develop our arts and spirituality dreams. If you're a regular kingdom space blog reader, you'll also know that I've been having coffee with Jackie Sewell, who wants to start an arts and spirituality centre (Amaze) for teenagers. We've been exploring the mutually benefical aromas.

The anglicans rang to suggest to us a joint lease - Jackie in the manse, Graceway in the church and are having an emergency meeting before Christmas to approve this if we want, possibly taking possession late January.

So a few months of vague dreamings over coffee could suddenly be a reality. Graceway leadership are meeting on Friday to talk. Graceway community are talking by email, having checked out the building a few weeks ago. It's all happening very quickly. Please pray that decisions made are cool for all and that all feel involved as much as they want to be.

Tuesday, December 10, 2002

Christianity Today Magazine - Weblog: Cleveland Priest Murdered

Cleveland Priest Murdered Cleveland police announced this morning that they had arrested a suspect for the murder of William Gulas, pastor of St. Stanislaus Church.

Hello from Berlin

Kerstin Hack

Took me a while to finally sign in! But wanted to say hi. Will write more about what´s happening in the kingdom in Germany (well, not the political kingdom - news on this one are not too good these days), but Gods kingdom....at least the stuff I haven´t already written about in my other blog: Berlin rocks. Berlin rocks, it really does!

Monday, December 09, 2002

mark riddle: I haven't found a blogger out there quite like the Ridman, the Ridmeister, making copies. check out his blog and tell me what that "what do you call it" is. He's mostly humor and commentary, and every now and then his commentary really challenges me.

Sunday, December 08, 2002

Itsmiracles.asp

Religious gathering grows to 150,000 participants.That's big!

Younger Evangelicals

Hey folks - I'm baaaaccckkk! OK, enough of that. I've been, like several it seems, reading The Younger Evangelicals by Robert Webber. I tried to start reading it at the beginning but got bogged down - had to start skipping around. I've skipped to chapter 7 - Ecclesiology. Very interesting stuff. I want to put a couple of quotes here for your benefit. I think this, just because of it's basic content, a very significant book. It's actually the first book that's really dealing with what's going on in the emerging church in a holistic way. We've had others that have dealt with Postmodernism, etc. but not with the whole emerging church phenomenon.

quote one: "The Constantinian church became so enmeshed with society that it soon served as the 'caretaker' or 'chaplain' of society. By being enmeshed with society and by offering prayer at its various functions, the church created a kind of 'civil religion' that legitimated the social order. It became the moral teacher for all citizens, calling upon them to live good, moral, and upright lives."

That may have been said before but it's still huge. He menitons too the connection later to the liberal social action agenda as well as the conservative agenda in politics. These tactics are not the answer.

He quotes John Green as saying something very key to the rising ethos of the emerging church: "...we are made to be light in the darkness–calling people to the road less travelled, to a costly discipleship that rejects the materialism, nationalism, militarism, classism, racism, and sexism of the American culture for the cross of Christ."

I'll quote more later - good stuff. I hope a lot of people read this book and their eyes are opened.

seven maga zine

Steve Collins on this month's seven maga zine answers the question, "So how does 'alternative worship' differ from 'postmodern church' or 'Gen X church'?

Friday, December 06, 2002

odd post? I don't think so. This scholarship for film and fiction typs seems appropriate for emerging church folks who are committed to these media (I don't know these folks, just seems interesting).
Bono at Wheaton: my thoughts

Thursday, December 05, 2002

CNN.com

Bono interview with Larry King
This is from last Sunday.

KING: If there is a God, he must be angry at a lot of this.

BONO: I think God is very angry at the moment, and I think there is -- I think it's shocking what is going on in the world. And I think it is an extraordinary moment.

Right now, I can tell you this. Our age will be remembered. This moment in time will be remembered for three things: the war against terror, sure; the Internet, probably; and how we let an entire continent, Africa, burst into flames and stood around with water in cans. This is not acceptable. It is not acceptable to let people die because they can't get the drugs that you and I take for granted. That means -- you have to ask very hard questions of ourselves if we're doing that.

Wednesday, December 04, 2002

allelon
Okay, this is my first post. Andrew said to only post stuff that would apply to a broad spectrum so this is the first worthy thing I've come across... Todd Hunter and some others have started an orginization called, Allelon. Here's a definition from the site:

...a relationally-based, missionary movement dedicated to reaching contemporary culture, establishing new communities of faith devoted to one another, and creating new delivery systems for equipping, and resourcing existing churches...

They are having their first gathering of associated leaders in January. I'm sure this group will bring about some amazing things in the Kingdom. I won't be there, but I'm sure some of you will so make sure we get a report.
I WONDER if there will be any bloggers or house church / emerging culture folks at the World Mission Briefings in Oxford in May. Or nearby?

Tuesday, December 03, 2002

Sand and chocolate

Some creative ways to share your love of God, his creation and eachother. More right here.

Sand confession:

Take a smoth tray of sand. Symbolise in it why you ache, why you are disconnected from earth, from others, from God. Ask a friend to smooth the sand and remind you that God heals and renews.

With friends:

Find some chocolate gold coins. Take a coin each. Give the coin to someone and share one thing you are celebrating. Receive the coin and listen to one thing your friend is celebrating. Eat chocolate and say the prayer of community.

"Lord, we come before you not alone,
But in the company of one another
We share our happiness with each other,
And it becomes greater
We share our troubles with each other,
And they become smaller
May we never be too mean to give,
Nor too proud to receive
For in giving and receiving, We learn to be loved
We encounter the meaning of life, And discover You."

(From: Be our Freedom, by: Terry Falla)

Monday, December 02, 2002

To follow up Jonny's post about Labyrinth. We ordered the Group Publishing version of it and will be using it across Saskatchewan and Western Canada this lenten season. It will be the first time that we know it being in Western Canada and we are really looking forward to the response.