Slow Church Stories #3: Vineyard Central Church

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Over the next couple of weeks, we will be sharing a number of stories of churches whose life together embodies some facet of Slow Church.  We hope these stories will stretch your imagination about what a Slow Church looks like.Previous Story: Munsey Memorial United Methodist Church Vineyard CentralNorwood, OH *** Check out SLOW CHURCH on the Patheos Book Club this week...Located in Norwood, an incorporated township that is surrounded by the city of Cincinnati, Vineyard Central (VC) has been cultivating a presence in the few blocks near their church building.  In the 19 … [Read more...]

Imagining Flourishing Communities.

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Here at Englewood Christian Church, we are in the process of discussing details of a proposal for a Senior Housing Development in our neighborhood.  There is a basic vision for the project, and an architect has sketched initial plans: As the first phase of development on the former Crown Laundry site, the Oxford Street Senior Apartments will feature 30-senior units to be housed in a three story building with a modern architectural style. Masonry and cement board construction with flat roofs lend to the classic style desired for the site. The latest in green building techniques will be … [Read more...]

The Big Table – Living in the Diversity of God’s People

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One of the things that pains me most is the acerbity with which Christians of diverse perspectives treat one another: the mocking, the name-calling, the refusal to talk civilly or to work together.  Since early on in the development of this Slow Church project, I have had an intuition that the act of slowing down and being attentive to those around us might be important baby steps in the direction of narrowing the deep chasms that divide the Body of Christ today.  One of the most exciting things about the recent Slow Church conference was the vast theological diversity of the participants: f … [Read more...]

JPUSA: A Tragic History of Sexual Abuse

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Although I heard awhile back that that this documentary on the sexual abuse of minors at the Jesus People USA (JPUSA) Community in Chicago was in the works, I happened to see this article on the Christianity Today website this afternoon and saw that it was released today.  I knew that it would be one that I needed to watch, so I plunked down my ten bucks and downloaded the movie.  You see, I have been acquainted with JPUSA for over 20 years; I have visited their community a couple of times and have friends who are members or former members.  There was a block of 5 or 6 years -- before my wife a … [Read more...]

Why I Don’t Go To Church

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There has been a lot of buzz online in recent days about the value of church attendance.  Initiated by a pair of posts by Donald Miller, ( The initial post... and the followup.), who bravely confessed that he rarely goes to church, Miller's posts were followed up by this piece on Christianity Today's PARSE blog, which dug a little deeper but had more of the feel of an expose, and didn't get to the heart of what seems (to me anyway) to be the crucial issues about church.I appreciate Donald's honesty -- and Brian McLaren's as well, in response to the PARSE piece -- and I have no interest … [Read more...]

Phil Kenneson: A Philosophical Argument for Slow Church

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This week, I re-read this wonderful passage from Phil Kenneson's superb essay "There's no such thing as objective truth, and it's a good thing too" (in the volume Christian Apologetics in the Postmodern World).  Phil will be one of our speakers for The Slow Church Conference, April 3-5.To summarize Phil's argument here, Christianity is better off without objective truth, because we are then driven deeper into our calling as good, vibrant (and I would add Slow) church communities.What do you think?  Do you buy Phil's argument here?  But I don’t want to stop at saying that C … [Read more...]

Alan Hirsch offers the first blurb for the Slow Church book!

Alan Hirsch

We received our first blurb for the Slow Church book today... from Alan Hirsch: "Chris and John have done a fantastic job of envisioning a wholesomely sustainable, spiritually alluring, and thoroughly kingdom-centric church that is simply fulfilling its purpose of witnessing to Jesus in the rhythms of God’s grace. I just have to join in! An inspiring read."Funny story about this.  When I inquired with Alan about the blurb, he said he'd be willing to write one, but might not get it done within the timeframe we needed it.  He joked that life was a bit "fast" for him now... Apparently, by fas … [Read more...]


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