The Rise of Conversational Churches

"Why a growing number of congregations are taking deliberate steps to relearn the habit of talking together." - Christianity Today

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Bert Perry's picture

A church near Don is mentioned, and I'd love to hear his perspective on this.

From my perspective, I'm torn.  On one side, I do believe that all too often, churches become factories instead of spiritual homes, and yes, we do need to learn to talk more.  We do need to eat with each other, get to know each other personally, and the like.

On the flip side, some of the churches cited seem to be using the technique to push theologies at variance with Scripture.  The logic seems to be "if only Bert would talk with a homosexual, he'd loosen up on that old fashioned Biblical doctrine of sexuality" at times.  

Part of the problem is illustrated in how conversation is started--both churches described began by selecting people to start.  In other words, to overcome a perceived factory mode, they began with....factory tactics which are designed to nudge things in a particular way.  That's not a natural, "organic" way of getting intrapersonal interaction or enabling people to learn to love one another.

Aspiring to be a stick in the mud.

Don Johnson's picture

Well, Vancouver is not far as the crow flies, but it is a ferry ride away. So its about four hours just to get to the other side, then you have to drive to wherever you're going. Which is to say I don't know anything about the church mentioned other than what I can find on the web.

The church is a member of the Canadian Baptists of Western Canada which is the Baptist Union, the mostly liberal Baptists. I have a cousin who was a preacher in some of their churches, retired now. He's pretty conservative, but seems not to be bothered by the extreme liberal views many in the denomination hold to.

As to the concept, I think it is important to build up the sense of "body" and "family" in the local church. We have our services on Sunday one after the other (10 am, 11:30 am, Lunch, and 1:15 pm) The lunch is potluck, every Sunday, and everyone is welcome, even if they didn't or couldn't bring anything. We hit on this a few years ago.. well, I guess about 15!! and have found it to be a huge blessing building up the people as one body. We average in the 50s, obviously it would be harder for larger churches to pull this off, though if you could figure out a way, I'd recommend it.

Maranatha!
Don Johnson
Jer 33.3