Emergent church?

29 Apr

At a meeting last night it was suggested that the church we attend was an emerging church. I nearly choked on the tortilla chips I was eating when I heard this. It’s maybe on its way there, but a long way off at the moment!

I think a lot of people are still very confused about emergent. I don’t want to take part in any picky denomination debate etc; but it is certainly evident that some mainstream churches have come to the conclusion, that a slightly different church service format equates to them being an emerging church.

The trouble is the service may be slightly changed, but the general church ethos doesn’t appear to change. The people are still encouraged to look inwardly at the church building, meetings, encouraged to bring the people in etc rather than a more outward looking approach.

I’m still pondering in my mind over this statement and how bad a job Jonathan and I are obviously doing in communicating to the people where we are. I guess at our old church it was a six year uphill struggle, and we are seeing the fruit from that now. I guess it will be the same here.


8 Responses to “Emergent church?”

  1. Rick April 29, 2008 at 20:07 #

    Thanks for posting all that. I think it’s the labeling that gets us in trouble. Some want to go there, others don’t want to go there, some think they’re there but don’t understand, others don’t care.

  2. Erin April 30, 2008 at 00:00 #

    I think in some ways the “emerging” church’s (whatever that may be) hesitation to define what emerging means, to forgo labels and all, in some ways only serves to our detriment, because then people think, like you said, that some candles or whatever, makes a church emerging…really it’s an entire ecclesiastical change.

    Wow, that was a really long run-on sentence, teacher Lyn. Sorry.

  3. Jenni Gover April 30, 2008 at 11:10 #

    At Church I have only ever been encouraged to look at God and Jesus and to know that the Church is just a building. I have been encouraged to look outward at the community and the World itself not within the Church walls.

    The ‘problem’ for me, however, is the lack of opportunity to actually do this and get involved on that basis.

    I have the ‘fire’ in me but need somewhere to put it.

    Only God knows what journey He has set for me but I need to be ready and prepared for it.

  4. traveller April 30, 2008 at 16:03 #

    What you have written is interesting because in my experience and observation it is impossible for an existing institutional expression of church to actually make the transition to “emerging” or anything else. There is far too much history and baggage that goes with old institutional expressions for this to be successful. Of course, some change can occur in some situations but revolutions are not really possible…..new wine in old wineskins….

  5. lynhallewell April 30, 2008 at 18:16 #

    Very true.

  6. lynhallewell April 30, 2008 at 18:19 #


    I’ll ignore your composition this time! LOL!! 😉

  7. lynhallewell April 30, 2008 at 18:24 #


    I think there are issues with the way current church systems encourage the congregation to “look outside” the church building. That is a whole long conversation within itself.

    We are off to Canada on Tuesday, so I won’t be around much, but let’s get together for coffee one evening once we get back and chat more if you want.

  8. lynhallewell April 30, 2008 at 18:41 #

    That is a really interesting comment and I largely agree, especially in terms of baggage etc. However, I don’t think I’d go as far as saying it is impossible – you never know what God is going to do!

    Through our experience so far, though, it has certainly been through people forming their own Christian communities/gatherings, outside of church, where they have really reaped, and experienced God in a new way.

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