Becoming Good Soil

For the last few weeks in our Sunday night conversation here at Englewood Christian Church, we have been exploring the imagery of sustainable agriculture to describe life together in the local church community.  This stream of our conversation began with the idea that churches work better as diverse poly-cultures (diverse types of people, doing diverse sorts of work), rather than mono-cultures (focusing on a narrow demographic of people –age-wise, ethnically or otherwise, or doing a single kind of work).  Last… Read more

The Church and the Commons

My pastor and friend, Bob Henry, posted a link on Facebook a few days ago to the text of a poster that was included in the October 2010 issue of YES! Magazine. (The poster is still available for purchase for three bucks through the magazine’s website. You can also download it for free as a PDF.) October 2010 was the Resilient Communities issue, and the poster was called “51 Ways to Spark a Commons Revolution.” (more…) Read more

Churches catalyzing local culture.

For several years now, I have been describing the work of local church communities in their particular places as catalyzing local culture.  However, I could only provide some barebones images and stories of what that might look like. This week, however, I discovered the new book Making Healthy Places from Island Press and edited by Andrew Danneberg, Howard Frumkin and Richard Jackson.  The authors whose work is offered in this volume call us to a vision of healthy community not… Read more

God’s Patience, The City and THE WIRE.

In my initial post on this blog, I noted that our vision of Slow Church was rooted in the slowness of God’s work in the world.  One facet of that slowness, as I described in that post is God’s choice to redeem the world by gathering a people.  Another facet is God’s patience with the depths and complexities of human rebellion.  From Cain’s founding of the first city (Gen. 4: 9-17) onward, the city has been an image of brokenness,… Read more

A Slow Church Poem: The Host

The Host A poem by William Carlos Williams According to their need,                    this tall Negro evangelist                                       (at a table separate from the                                       rest of his party); these two young Irish nuns                    (to be described subsequently);                                       and this white-haired Anglican have come witlessly                    to partake of the host                                       laid for them (and for me) by the tired waitresses. It is all                    (since eat we must)                                       made sacred by our common need. (more…) Read more

Book Recommendation: The McDonaldization of the Church

Slow Church started as a hunch. It started, for me, when I was researching the Slow Food Movement for a book I was writing about gluttony. (Of the seven deadly sins, gluttony is the one most likely to actually kill me.) There was no flash of light, no catch of breath or buckled knees. It just simply occurred to me one afternoon that the values Slow Food brought to growing, harvesting, processing, and eating food – values like justice, diversity,… Read more

Mr. Rogers and the Formative Power of Dinner Table Conversation.

In one of his last books, Fred Rogers – a Presbyterian minister otherwise known as PBS’s Mr. Rogers – made the poignant observation that: “At the dinner table children learn the art of making conversation – how to take turns listening and talking and how to put their ideas into words.  Even their vocabulary increases as they learn new words and new ideas from others in the family.” [ Read this quote in its context on Google Books ] [… Read more

A Prayer for Slow Churches from Oscar Romero

I was recently reminded of this prayer from Oscar Romero and thought that it was a lovely theological meditation on what it means to be a slow church. It helps, now and then, to step back and take the long view. The kingdom is not only beyond our efforts, it is beyond our vision. We accomplish in our lifetime only a tiny fraction of the magnificent enterprise that is God’s work. Nothing we do is complete, which is another way… Read more

The Slow Church Conversation.

“What is Slow Church?” This question is one that I’ve been getting quite a bit recently.  I’m always at a bit of a loss to answer, however, because so many things are swirling through my head.  Over the coming months, John Pattison and I will facilitate a conversation here that will explore what we mean by Slow Church, and what that might look like in a variety of different church contexts.  But a conversation has to begin somewhere, so let… Read more

Official first post will appear tomorrow!

The official first post on this new blog will appear tomorrow, Thursday September 29! This is simply a test post… Check back tomorrow for our first post… And while you’re waiting, connect with us via Facebook, Twitter or Email (see the sidebar ——–> ), so that you don’t miss a post! Read more

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