Here’s a recap of last week’s major highlights from the missional conversation:
- Another Week, Another Mass Killing this time near Milwaukee, Wisconsin, at a Sikh gurdwara. I didn’t think I’d be referring to my earlier post on processing missional theology in the aftermath of tragedy so soon after the Aurora shooting, but we’ve experienced another national tragedy, this time with a shooter who was apparently part of a white supremacist group and clearly targeted these Sikh believers for being “other.” We should all pause to consider what our response is going to be in our local communities to a national tragedy such as this one. Here in my community we are holding a candlelight vigil downtown tonight, and I am organizing a group to go and worship at the Sikh gurdwara in Charlotte this coming Sunday. How are you responding where you are?
- My Interview on Darkwood Brew — I was the special guest on Darkwood Brew last night, which was a lot of fun. Thanks to everyone who joined live online to watch and chat in the comments! I talked about the missional shift as being a key component of the emergence within Christianity we are experiencing right now, as well as the move toward greater engagement in interfaith dialogue and understanding, which was underscored by the tragic events yesterday in Wisconsin. My advice: Do not wait until tragedy happens to get to know your Sikh and Muslim neighbors (and people of other faiths or no faith at all, as well). Start building those relationships now, so that when bad things happen, you already have established trust to stand with your neighbors and support them during those times. (And they will, no doubt, do the same for you!)
- Rob Bell’s “Still Painting” — Last week, I posted a fairly comprehensive recap of Rob Bell’s recent livestream event called “Still Painting,” and focused specifically on some of the comments Bell made about local church ministry. I asked the question, “Is Rob Bell really cynical about local church ministry?” Take a look and see what you think!
- Praxis Conference in Atlanta — The Center for Progressive Renewal hosts its annual National Church Leadership Institute (a.k.a. Praxis21: Practicing Progressive Christianity in the 21st Century) in Atlanta, August 8-10. Speakers include Phyllis Tickle, Bruce Reyes-Chow, Jennifer Butler, Eric Elnes (from Darkwood Brew), Kimberly Knight, and others. I really wish I could be there with all those wonderful people, but I’ll be following the conference from afar. Hopefully there’s a #praxis21 hashtag being used!
- Jesus Radicals in Charlotte — This weekend, August 10-11, I’ll be participating in an international gathering of Christian anarchists here in Charlotte, NC, which should be very interesting, challenging, and fun. I don’t consider myself an anarchist, but I know I’ll learn a lot from the folks who’ll be gathered and leading worshops, etc. My friend Mark Van Steenwyk from Missio Dei in Minneapolis (who is also on the Leadership Team for TransFORM Network) will be here, so I’m looking forward to seeing him.
What are you doing this weekend? Hanging out with anarchists? Worshipping with Sikhs? I’m just curious. What does missional engagement look like in your context? Tell us about your plans in the comments!
Got missional church news that you’d like to see me cover here on the blog? Send it to me via email (stevek AT missionalshift DOT com) or post it in the comments! Thanks for reading.