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Brick-and-Mortar Pastor Defends Virtual Church as Real - The Christian Post

Guiding us in this work is a series of questions:. The results of these experiments are still unfolding. The call to innovate is not an appeal to sell every building or to scrap every organ. Rather, it is an invitation to delve deeper into exploring what has made our communities distinctively Christian throughout the ages and then imagine how those attributes might be reframed or reinterpreted for our changing world.

Amazon has wagered that brick-and-mortar bookstores and grocery stores still have a place in this world. Innovation , Congregational innovation. Kevin Wright: Amazon, Whole Foods and the future of the brick-and-mortar church. Tuesday, September 5, Guiding us in this work is a series of questions: Where do people in our community gather? What types of spaces foster laughter, story sharing, contemplation and inspiration? What do those spaces look like, and why do they evoke these human responses? How do people in our community gather?

When are they in large groups? When are they in smaller, more intimate clusters? Are people gathering online in a Facebook comment thread or in a Twitter feed? What do people in our community do when they gather? Are they buying things? Are they eating?

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Only two things on earth right now are eternal — the Word of God, that stands forever, and people. Am I wrong that when someone puts on a conference, they generally like to have people pay money to attend.


To get a crowd one might toss out a catchy, provocative, engaging title, some personalities, some white hot church plants, some of the stuff that will attract folks. And then the promoters will certainly dispense with the sameold, sameold stuff, will trot out the testimonies, some personalities, some chicken little types? NO, the red brick, white mortar church is NOT doomed. There are challenges.

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And NO, the 11 am service is not doomed. There are some transitions and challenges there too. Let those who have creative ideas get out there and do it. Let the brethren get excited about creativity and innovation. They actually looked at the combination of church planting and the mega church movement. I think the days of buying property and building a building will be over and church will become much more communial.

I heard Hirsh speak at a church planting conference a couple of years ago. He had done some studies that showed that only about 30 percent of the population would even consider going to contemporary church models. So he is looking at more than just the typical brick and mortar churches. What I took away from his message was that these types of churches better consider different means and methods to reaching a broader spectrum of the population.

I was encouraged as a pastor of a traditional church that we still have an appeal to most people in our rural community. We still have a huge opportunity to reach many people but we also need to be aware of ways we need to innovate. I agree that discipleship should be at the core of this. We seem to want growth mostly for the wrong reasons but fail to do the simplest and most obedient thing: tell people about Jesus and invite them to attend church with us. I think the issue is one of obedience — we need to be his witnesses, ambassadors from another country, proclaimers; and leave the results up to Him.

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  8. Dan B. I basically agree with Greg. I would say that people are more prone to invite people to church, but never tell them about Jesus. It is easier to invite someone to church and expect someone else, i. This happened to me not too long ago during a local outreach. I told one Christian what we were doing when some fresh people showed up to participate. I explained how we were attempting to engage people and share the gospel. She said she did know about sharing the gospel, but she thought she would just invite them to church on Sunday. Mark, I eat with Dan just about once a week.

    If you want to get into a sarcasmathon with him, make sure you come armed and ready! As a pastor, if someone is willing to invite someone else to church in such a winsome manner they actually attend, then, I feel privileged to get the opportunity to share the gospel with them. We focus as a people far too much on the mechanics of our faith, the music, the buildings, our organizations, the mission structures that support evangelism.

    We need to see the difference between the structures which are important but temporary and the life within which is eternal. It is in fact the life within that was the point of our evangelism and our structures. Baptists spend far too much time and engergy maintaining the structure so that there are not enough cycles to focus on the life of Christ within us that are message bearers for in the world.

    We are distracted with many things. We claim to be people of the Book, but sometimes we seem more interested in preserving the status quo of our traditions. Their focus was to guard closely what they had received and to pass it on intact to the ones who would receive the Christian mysteries, so that nothing was lost of what Christ had given to them.

    The focus is on Our Saving Lord, our source of abundant life. I came across the bible that I used heavily when I was involved in the youth group of the church that I still attend twenty-five years later. Now, please be aware that a little over twenty-one years has passed between the two bulletin. They are formatted the same and still printed on the same paper stock since the church has not changed printing companies nor invested in their own printing capabilities.

    Faith, bricks, mortar, and reinforced concrete

    The back page still carries a short blurb from the pastor along with some space for note taking. The organist is still the same. In fact, the organ is still the same after the church has spent over 1.

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    You do the math. The basic layouts of the two services, with the exception of the dedicated time to recognize the mothers in the congregation, were identical from the prelude all the way to the postlude. Their positions within the service themselves from the welcome to the worship set to the choir special to the sermon were all in the same positions twenty years later.

    Ironically enough, the choir special happened to the be the same song twenty years later. So, twenty-one years later, my church still operates in the same way with very few changes. Even some of the programs promoted in the earlier bulletin were still clamoring for volunteers all these years later…. Bill, I dare say your informal experiment would have the same results at a lot of churches I have been a part of over the years. Perhaps a new saying is in order. I just had this conversation with someone in my church.

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    If we would permit at least a few things to be different, when we highlight that unchanging truth is firm, we might have more credibility. Instead, most of us spend too much time trying to be some past decade—be it the 50s, 70s, or 90s. Like this: Like Loading Notify of. Mike Bergman. May 6, pm. Dave Miller.