From Around The Blogs

Here’s a few blogposts from the past week that have caught my eye.

Thoughts on Worship – Pete Lev takes on two of the most common (and often least thought-out) critiques of contemporary worship from within the emerging/missional ranks (‚ÄúWe don‚Äôt do singing‚Äù and “…naff, Jesus is my girlfriend songs‚Äù). In particular, these thoughts stood out,

“…I also don‚Äôt buy that whole ‚Äúmen don‚Äôt sing‚Äù thing either ‚Äì and even if it were true in wider culture (which it isn‚Äôt) that would be no reason to stop singing in church.”

“I wonder sometimes in all this if there isn‚Äôt a danger of a kind of cultural snobbishness. Or a theological snobbishness. A dismissal of popular forms of church and Christian expression, in the name of being ‚Äúcutting edge‚Äù.”

Moleskine External Hard Drive Enclosure via Johnny Laird – Yes, I love Moleskine notepads and yes that is a cool mashup. But, it is not a patch on the ubercool Create a Moleskine PDA: The Student GTD Hack from C. Wess at GatheringInLight.

Marquee: Emerging Approaches to Church Leadership (And The Fading Ones Too) – Some great stuf again from C. Wess, this time on the fuzzy question of leadership in an emerging context. Really speaks from the kind of fluid and quotidian understanding of church that I’m trying to find/build.

Stolen Goods: Tempted to Plagiarize via Kruse Kronicle – I can distincly recall the first time I heard a blatantly plagarised sermon and it made me feel sick to my stomach. The same feeling hit me when I heard a young (and much vaunted) minister in my denomination preaching in “his” new church and delivering stuff that was cut and pasted from that week’s email newsletters. Michael really nailed the issue in the comments section of his blogpost,

“If we send someone of to seminary to learn languages, theology, and other tools so they can open the Word of God to us in our context, then all they do is read someone else’s sermons to us, is that legit? Why not just hire an accomplished drama student from high school to deliver the sermon? It is that expectation that the pastor is truly entering into the Word and opening it to people that I think makes it dishonest for a pastor to read another’s work (or large portions of a work) as though it were his or her own without acknowledgement that is dishonest.”

Homiletical Ideas for the Burned-Out Pastor – Maybe the alternative to plagiarism? I don’t know, but this tounge-in-cheek list made me laugh out loud!

Extending the Reach of the Classroom via Brad.Boydston.us – Some promising and smart developments in the use of video in educational contexts to provide modules and teching support. Also, check out Mary’s links to some examples of social networking in educational contexts.

Creativity and Religion via Knightopia – Blogger Rod Garvin has struck up a conversation with one of my favourite writers, Richard Florida (see my thoughts on the creative class here). Whilst I see Florida’s work as essential to understanding both globalisation and the economic role of creativity in society and I hold creativity to be an essential theological category in my own understanding I have to sadly admit that faith and creativity are seldom an active mix in global cities. At least seldom is not never and where they do mix, the combination is powerful. Maybe the biggest challenge is how to allow that small edge of global creative faith at work in the creative class to speak to the rest of the church?

Women in Christianity – Steve’s blog has been one of my favourites for a long time and this response to Mark Driscoll’s most recent faux pas really merits reflection.

Comments

  1. says

    many years ago when i was a young lass in the faith i realized that the most popular pastor at my church had lifted his sunday message from a popular book without giving any credit or props to the author. the same pastor later told a good friend of mine that he privately believed in “post-trib” but would only teach “pre-trib” from the pulpit because that is what most people in his church believe. as a 20-something woman this was both confusing and disconcerting.

    now, two decades later, i am intrigued at how much effort is put into the sunday message and how much effort is put into guarding the pulpit from ordinary people. this, to me, gives the mirage of a kind of spiritual classism, where only the professionally trained can unpack messages, and at times, pre-packaged canned sermons. Geez, no wonder there is an epidemic of disillusionment and cynicism raging through the mainstream church.

  2. says

    Pam, thank you for putting it that way. I agree that gatekeeping a pulpit that carries no craft is not only illogical, it is massively disillusioning. One interesting thing, from my experience, is that those most keen to see the puplit “protected” have not always been paid clergy, but rather, lay gatekeepers within the church.

  3. says

    “If we send someone of to seminary to learn languages, theology, and other tools so they can open the Word of God to us in our context, then all they do is read someone else’s sermons to us, is that legit? Why not just hire an accomplished drama student from high school to deliver the sermon? It is that expectation that the pastor is truly entering into the Word and opening it to people that I think makes it dishonest for a pastor to read another’s work (or large portions of a work) as though it were his or her own without acknowledgement that is dishonest.”

    I’d suggest that this illustrates how a very large portion of mainstream church has failed to understand what a pastor really is, and how the current office of chief exectutive/dish and bottle washer is rather badly out of order.

    Yes, I think in that kind of church it would be better to use a drama student.

    I hope to manage a decent blogpost on the whole topic of leadership and how we grow our church leaders at some stage. I just hope I can find the energy and interest to do it without getting angry and writing rubbish, or just simply forgetting what I want to say (most likely).