J.R. Briggs – FAIL [Patheos Book Club]

Fail-FINAL-COVER

[ This post is part of the Patheos Book Club discussion of FAIL ]Fail: Finding Hope and Grace in the Midst of Ministry Failure. J.R. Briggs IVP Books, 2014One of the characteristics of McDonaldization named in sociologist George Ritzer’s important book, The McDonaldization of Society, is the desire for control. As John Pattison and I have argued in the  Slow Church book, the effects of McDonaldization have become deeply entrenched in churches, just as they have in the broader culture.  One of the bitter fruits of the desire for control that I have observed in churches is a deep ave … [Read more...]

The Spoken Word vs. The Written Word

The Spoken Word

I've been writing about lectio divina this week, as part of my next book project on Reading for the Common Good.  I'm fascinated by the early monastic practice of (almost always) reading aloud, which not only was common practice in that day, but also served to engage the body as well as the mind in learning and meditating upon scripture.  As part of my research, I encountered the following passage from Eugene Peterson's Eat this Book.I had never really thought about how important the spoken word is and how the written word is a reduction of the spoken word, eliminating such important c … [Read more...]

Slow Church, Sin and Repentance.

storm_clouds

My friend Tato Sumantri, of Church of the Servant King in Eugene, Oregon (which incidentally hosted one of the Slow Church events that John and I did in the Pacific Northwest last month) recently sent me an email with a couple of very thoughtful questions about the Slow Church book.  I will be answering these questions here over the next week.  Here is the first one:“[You] make scant reference to sin and repentance. On a whole, Slow Church: Cultivating Community in the Patient Way of Jesus reads as one option among many to live out life in Christ, but nothing is really at stake. In his Rom … [Read more...]

Tom Sine Interviews us About Slow Church

Slow Church Cover

While we were on the road promoting the Slow Church book in June, one of our events was hosted in Seattle by the venerable Tom and Christine Sine.Before the evening's events kicked off, Tom recorded a video interview with us about the book.   Watch this conversation in three brief parts below, and be sure to watch the 3rd segment in which John turns the tables and poses a question to Tom!  Segment 1:    Segment 2:      Segment 3: (John turns the tables on Tom...)      … [Read more...]

Will you help spread the word about Slow Church?

Slow Church Cover

Have you read the Slow Church book already?   Or are you in the process of reading it?   We'd love for you to help spread the word about the Slow Church conversation...   Here are several things that would be very helpful:   1) Once you have finished the book, post a brief review to Amazon and/or Goodreads.2) Does your church library have a copy of Slow Church?  If not, buy a copy for the library. Or recommend it if the library has a budget for acquisitions.3) Does your public library have a copy (or copies) of Slow Church? If not, recommend it to them.  … [Read more...]

Celebrate Interdependence Day 2014!

Starry_Starry_Night

7 Essential Books for Understanding Interdependence as Christians  I've recently read Fred Lehr's book on Clergy Burnout.  What's striking about this book is that he describes burnout not simply as function of unhealthy clergy, but as a codependent relationship between pastor(s) and laity. Congregations that expect their pastors to over-perform are often enabled to do less work than we have been called to do as members of Christ’s Body. Lehr also suggests that the journey from unhealthy congregations to healthy ones is marked by a shift in the clergy/laity relationship from co … [Read more...]

Slow Church Conference Recordings (The Complete Set)

Slow Church Conference

Here are all the conference recordings from April's Slow Church Conference at Englewood Christian Church in Indianapolis. These talks are an important supplement to our book, bringing other, wiser voices into the Slow Church conversation. And for an even deeper look, we highly recommend the books that our speakers have written. (Titles and links can be found on the pages for each talk)Please listen, download and share these recordings as you see fit.Talk #1: Willie James Jennings (Duke Divnity School) “A Place of Redemption: Putting Church on the G … [Read more...]


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