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An introduction to the next decade of ministry

Overview

It is likely that Christian ministry will see more impactful changes in the next ten years than it has in the past 100.  The reasons for this are many.

But, in summary, what we are seeing can be characterized as the “unbundling of Church.”

What we think is important to understand is that this is the result of the convergence of three particular social trends:

First, the challenge to the Christian religion as an institution.  The rise in the numbers of the “unaffiliated,” is the result of America asking: “Why do we need the Church as an institution to live a life of faith?”

Secondly, the shift in the center of gravity of the Christian religion from the Church as an institution to other areas of society.  The interest in a common good, a sense of community, and a more ethical means of making money are all things that are enabled through the business world.

Third, the individual as the starting point of the construction of reality.  The technological empowerment of the individual now makes preferential the unbundling of religion and religious activity with the creator economy now trending as the platform for actualizing religious potential.

Approach

As societal data and ecclesiological debate on the future of the Church as a philosophical or principled matter has been well documented, what will be posted here is a basic way for denominational leaders, clergy, and the laity to frame ministry for the long term.

We do this through the parameters of three changing roles:

First, the changing role of the religious leader.

Second, the changing role of religious faith.

Third, the changing role of the religious institution.

What we seek is a dynamic foundation through which religious leaders of all types are able to make decisions that matter for now and for the future.

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