I ended Part One with this line:
But, whatever we call it, the time has now come (if it is not long overdue) for us to wonder if the Church should continue to offer that at all, given that it does not seem to bring about the world that it says that it wants.
What I mean by this is something fairly simple. It is that this notion of discipleship (via church affiliation) comes from the same world as the all-providing job. Thus, if that job is now dying because its world is as well, then so is this definition of discipleship.
In other words, we have built and maintained vertically integrated denominational structures. These have allowed the Church to hold up its end of our default religious contract: members stay devoted to the Church and the Church provides everything needed for discipleship.
The other way around
This contract, however, is no longer necessary nor desired in the world of today and tomorrow. In its place is quite the opposite:
the Church as an institution must devote itself to the individual. Then, the individual will build the structures necessary to bring about the kind of world that Jesus wanted.
The language that I use to characterize this fundamental shift is to go from being a congregation to becoming a platform. And, the repercussions of such a shift in our current denomination would be massive. But, the reality is that things have already begun to move in that direction.
Those of us who are extra astute will recognize this as the “dreams” part of PASTORIA’s three aspects of mission: digital, diversity, and dreams. Tomorrow, we will look into its specifics, starting with the solo-pastor.
[END OF PART TWO]
Because this is such an important concept, it is being published in parts so that it can catch and keep your attention. It is laying the theological and sociological foundation for, ultimately, the basic shift for local church ministry in this new era: from congregation to platform.
So, the next part gets sent out tomorrow (Wednesday) at the same time.
Until then, be safe and stay committed to digital, diversity, and dreams!
James from PASTORIA
Head of Guidance