Lament and the Aurora theater shooting.

AK-47

I heard about the theater shooting in Aurora, Colorado as I was on my way home yesterday from a retreat with my wife.  The news left me speechless; how does one respond to senseless violence on that scale?This morning, as I continued to reflect on this tragic incident, I recalled a very helpful passage in Chris Rice and Emmanuel Katongole's recent book Reconciling All Things (Duke Divinity School Center for Reconciliation / IVP Resources for Reconciliation Series).  I dug up a copy of the book and mulled over the chapter on lament. I had forgotten how the authors had connected lament with s … [Read more...]

Tina Fey… and Improv as a metaphor for the biblical drama.

Bossypants-Cover-tina-fey

I'm working today on revising the theological overview chapter for the Slow Church book. One of the key ideas that I borrow from pastor and theologian Sam Wells is that:“Improvisation in the theatre is a practice through which actors develop trust in themselves and one another in order that they may conduct unscripted dramas without fear.”I've been encouraged recently by some early readers of this chapter to make the improv metaphor robust...This morning as I was getting ready to work on this chapter, I stumbled upon a great blog post by my friend Jen Michel, in which she reflects o … [Read more...]

Let’s Celebrate Interdependence Day!

Farmers_Market

A major facet of the Ecology section of our Slow Church book, is coming to the realization that creation is an inter-connected and interdependent whole. Several years ago, my friends Ragan Sutterfield, Brent Aldrich and I brainstormed a long list of ideas for celebrating July 4th as INTERdependence Day.  This list was eventually published on the Sojourners blog with an intro by Shane Claiborne.As we come again to the 4th of July, I think it would serve us well to take another look at this list. And to imagine what a slow church might look like that bore witness to the interdependence of … [Read more...]

Congregational Lectio Divina as a Slow Church practice.

Conversation

At the Ekklesia Project gathering later this week, I will be leading lectio divina sessions on John 15:4-17.Doing lectio in a congregational (or small group) setting is a fruitful practice that will lead churches deeper into the life that John and I are calling Slow Church.Mark Lau Branson, who led the lectio divina sessions at last summer's EP Gathering, pointed us to the following thoughts on congregational lectio divina: Argentinean/Chicagoan Nancy Bedford, after expositing an ecclesial missiology grounded in the Trinity and the incarnation, focuses on discernment with attention to … [Read more...]

The Anguish of Imperfect Communion [An Ekklesia Project Guest Post by Juila Smucker]

Eucharist

[ NEXT WEEK, July 5-7, The Ekklesia Project will hold its annual gathering in Chicago, which will be on the theme of Slow Church.  Between now and July, we will be running a series of guest reflections here by folks connected with the E.P. We've asked guest posters to reflect on the meaning of Slow Church from their own local contexts. More info on the E.P. gathering.  ] Today’s reflection, the seventh in the series, is by Julia Smucker.Read the previous post in the series by John Jay Alvaro.For about the past five years, I have been a par … [Read more...]

Conversation, Identity and Christian Unity.

BTA-Convo

I have been keenly following Timothy Dalrymple's posts this week about partisan scorn and his critical response to Rachel Held Evans' well-traveled post “How to Win a Culture War and Lose a Generation”...  Although I'm a bit skeptical of Dalrymple's choice of Evans as an example of  "selling scorn," I'm not really going to comment on their back and forth, as I don't have a stake in either side of that conversation.What was of interest to me, in light of my concern for our churches as hubs of conversation were these excellent three points that Dalrymple offered at the end of his most recent … [Read more...]

A Friend of Time [An Ekklesia Project Guest Post by John Jay Alvaro]

wb-102

[ On July 5-7, The Ekklesia Project will hold its annual gathering in Chicago, which will be on the theme of Slow Church.  Between now and July, we will be running a series of guest reflections here by folks connected with the E.P. We've asked guest posters to reflect on the meaning of Slow Church from their own local contexts. More info on the E.P. gathering.  ] Today’s reflection, the seventh in the series, is by John Jay Alvaro.Read the previous post in the series by Janice Love. It is the second largest Sunday school class in the church. I … [Read more...]


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