I’m convinced that beneath the dusty veneer of every mainline denomination is the bud, the glint, and the breath of something new, important, and dynamic the Spirit is birthing. Tom Brackett, an incredibly gifted blogger as well as church planting exec with the Episcopal Church, says renewal begins by reconnecting clergy and leaders with our first love, then abandoning the fears that hold us back so we can venture forth into God’s great unknown.
Tom’s expansive intellect as well as his passion for the Gospel have made him a pioneering, deep thinker on issues of church planting and redeveloping, which means I had to interview him. It’s an interview that’s had me reflecting on the foundations of what we do and why we do it – it will have you doing the same.
Watch the Full Program:
Rather listen? Click here for the Mp3.
The old metrics, ‘how many members does your church have, how many come on Sunday, and what’s your annual budget,’ are out, according to Tom Brackett. He sees the new missional metrics of health and vitality telling a much more significant story for mainline churches. In his work, as an ‘archaeologist of hopefulness,’ Tom is mining stories of passion and deep connection to God that, he sees, are integral to establishing and re-establishing vibrant churches. Here are my notes:
The Molting Process
Just as crustaceans leave behind an old, once useful shell, in order to become something new, congregation members need not continue to define themselves by the sacred halls of the old, rather to envision the new to which they are being called.
Service Because WE Need It
Outreach to the needy as an evangelism strategy is popular today, but for all the newcomers it may bring us, and the warm fuzzies it might give us, have we truly connected with the necessity of connection with the poor for our own salvation?
Have the Courage to Fail
Tom says the average baby falls 300 times before her first step, and 450 times before the infant can walk consistently. When we an see failure not as a sin against God but as a preparation for what will be, our courage can be invigorated.
Church Post – If you are looking to improve your church’s communications you’ve got to check out this great email platform. I’ve found it easy-to-use, reliable, and John, Debra and Kim are great to work with.
Wistia- If you’re still hosting your videos at YouTube or another ‘free’ video sharing site you know the drawbacks. Wistia helps me put out great looking videos and see who’s watching for how long. The Wistia staff is easy to work with and very professional.
The Grow My Church Store – Everything from mugs to pens to fridge magnets, this is a promotional products store aimed at helping churches become closer communities, more hospitable, and welcoming. I started this store and shop there often because I couldn’t find anywhere else to go for these products.