Friday, September 12, 2008

Conference Preview: The Church, the Continuation of God's Narrative

I am getting increasingly excited about the third annual conference on the Call to an Ancient Evangelical Future, coming up October 9-11.

In the past few days, our speakers have given us glimpses into what they’ll be sharing with us. I think you’ll find this material thought-provoking and equipping for ministry.

Check out these previews:

Discovering Your Church’s Missional DNA
Rick Richardson, director, masters in evangelism & leadership, Wheaton College
§ Missional is the new code word in the theology and praxis of ecclesiology. But how do we become genuinely missional and not just rhetorically missional?
§ Rick Richardson will help you understand what God is doing in restoring the missional identity of the church, and where your church—with its unique missional DNA—might fit.

The Good, the Bad, and the Ridiculous: The Church Visible
Jenell Paris, professor of sociology and anthropology, Messiah College
§ We need an authentic common sense approach to connect the AEF Call to “take seriously the visible character of the church” with what can be observed in the everyday life of our congregations.
§ Jenell Paris will help you think about how your congregation incorporates the good, the bad, and the ridiculous. She will help you consider the unique stories of your congregation, and how those stories fit with the larger story of the church.

Can the Church and Capitalism Get Along?
David Fitch, founding pastor, Life on the Vine Christian Community and prof. of evangelical theology, Northern Seminary
§ Despite the benefits they bring us, capitalism and consumerism distort the church, its fellowship, its spiritual formation, and its mission. How do we shape a community of Christ that is in capitalism, but not of it?
§ David Fitch will offer some basic practices we can adopt to protect our churches from being squeezed into capitalism’s mold.

Tracing the Church’s Journey
Howard Snyder, prof. of Wesley studies, Tyndale Seminary; former prof. of history & theology of mission, Asbury Seminary.
§ The twists and turns, the highways and detours, of the church’s journey through 2000 years of history and a slew of cultures clarifies our present challenge.
§ Howard Snyder will help you think about how that journey will help your congregation effectively come to grips with its own story and mission in light of “God’s narrative” and the biblical story.

Preserving the Church’s Story
D. H. Williams, prof. of patristics & historical theology, Baylor University
§ If the church forgets its story, it will be shaped by the world’s stories. We can easily lose our identity and our mission.
§ To prevent such loss, the ancient church developed a systematic approach to Christian education. It aimed to preserve its message by teaching its story. Because many of its members were illiterate, the church’s message had to be preserved in the minds and hearts of its members.

* * *

The conference is fast approaching, so register right away.


adam matthew said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
adam matthew said...

Excellent article. This article realises me the good,bad and ridiculous. The story of the church shown in the article is really good.

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