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What is Church? A Calendar of Events or a Community of Disciples? How do we get it right? February 24, 2011

Posted by Phil Groom in Christianity, Church, Theological Reflection.
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Refreshing thinking from Fresh Expressions:

… but how do we rise to the challenge? I’m updating our church website at www.henlowchurch.org.uk and www.langfordchurch.org.uk (mirrored domains for two parishes in a united benefice to ensure that each church gets its own but can’t get away from the other!).

All suggestions welcome on how to avoid the Calendar-of-Events syndrome appreciated, please…

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Comments»

1. warriet - February 24, 2011

no idea 😦 all religions, not jut Christianity, are tied to the calendar so it’s very difficult to see how this can be undone

Phil Groom - February 24, 2011

Thanks David. I guess on reflection it’s all part and parcel of the same thing: a community that doesn’t do things together ceases to be a community … but on t’other hand, if doing things together dominates to the point where people can’t simply be together, or even skip an event to be on their own without feeling guilty (and that’s what tends to happen in churches), then I’d say the balance has been lost somewhere down the line…

2. David - February 24, 2011

I think it’s often presumed that a calendar of events will lead to a community of disciples, and that everyone gets to caught up in the events they can forget about the discipleship.

Phil Groom - February 24, 2011

Sadly so… and now I’m confused: do I give that a thumbs-up because you’re right, or a thumbs-down because the church is wrong?

3. Jessie - February 24, 2011

I think the idea of having a calendar of events is to provide the scope for community and relationship-building. We cannot look to the event itself to make people relate to each other – just because two people are on a boat together doesn’t mean you can make them talk 🙂

That said, if it’s possible for key members of the church to spend non-church calendar time and build authentic community (through life groups, or even just doing simple things like meeting up for coffee or helping each other out in the simple mundane things of life) then there’s a hope…

So I guess I’m saying, it’s great to have a calendar of events to be able to draw and meet new people but the only way they’ll end up staying if they can sense authentic community. Or if they are not inclined then they will leave immediately instead of cluttering up the community by just showing up for each event without contributing to the church at all.


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