Posts Tagged culture

GCA Seminar Day 3

This is the third post in a series of recaps from the GCA Church Planting Seminar (click here for part 1 and part 2).

Session 7: Styles
This session was trying to uncover the particular styles that are necessary for doing ministry that will faithfully reach the culture of our community. Two dangers were discussed: 1) Under-adapting to the culture (ethnocentrism) and 2) Over-adapting to the culture (syncretism). Ethnocentrism is the belief that one’s own culture, race, or nation is superior to all others and that one’s cultural ways of doing things is the correct and only way (ex: “Hymns are the most worshipful form of music in the church because that’s how I’ve always worshiped most fervently”). Syncretism is the contamination of Christian faith, ritual, or beliefs through incorporation of inappropriate cultural components (ex: “Most people co-habitate before marriage, so the church shouldn’t have a problem with it”). We talked about how worship style, learning style, community formation styles, and outreach styles all have to be faithful to biblical teaching and relevant to the culture that a specific church is in.

Session 8: Ministry Model
This session was one of the most helpful, and I look forward to sharing some of our insights in the future. The key question here was, “How will the church ministries work together?” This is an important question so that the whole church has focus, synergy and doesn’t let good things get in the way of great things. During this session, we worked to put together a flow chart that shows how all the church’s ministries work together. Very helpful.

Session 9: Finances
This was a practical session about the steps involved in fundraising and managing money. Fortunately, we have some good people already in place to handle the managing of money (I don’t want to be anywhere near it for many reasons). This session emphasized that as a pastor, even the accusation of improper use of money is as devastating as actually screwing it up. Nonetheless, we will need to raise a significant amount of money in order to start in strength. If you’d like to partner with us, click here.

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GCA Seminar Day 1

This is the first post recapping our lessons from the GCA Church Planting Seminar. Be sure to interact with the question at the bottom. We want to hear your thoughts!

Well, after a late arrival for me and a (mostly) sleepless night for Molly, we arrived in Orlando yesterday eager to learn and glad to be together. We’ve met some really neat people and were able to have dinner with Steve Ogne, EVBC’s church-planting coach. That time alone was invaluable.

Here were some of the key lessons from each session:

Session 1: Vision
The vision for church planting starts with a vision for the glory of God. The chief way that God has chosen to glorify his name is through the kingdom of God. The means God uses to advance his kingdom is the church of God. The church’s power and strength all comes from the gospel of God.

Vision for the Glory of God → Vision for the Kingdom of God → Vision for the Church of God → Vision for the Gospel of God

Session 2: Focus
This session was all about understanding the cultural context of the community we’re planting in. We thought through all the greatest needs of people in our specific community (physical, economic, social, emotional, mental, educational, spiritual and moral) and talked about ways that a new church can meet those needs with the Gospel. This session gave us a number of practical exercises that we’ll begin to do with the launch team so that we can really think like missionaries to the Williams Gateway/Queen Creek communities.

Session 3: Prayer
This session was about the need for strong prayer lives among the leadership and a culture of God-dependent prayer in the new church. I was very encouraged about how this is developing for Second Mile. Here were a few great quotes worth sharing:

Mary, Queen of Scots:

“I fear the prayers of John Knox more than all the assembled armies of Europe.”

Francis Schaeffer:

“Our greatest danger is not liberalism, modernism, postmodernism, Bible criticism…the greatest danger is the church doing the work of ministry in the power of the flesh.”

Today we have sessions on Philosophy, Discipleship, and Values. Should be fun. Thanks for your prayer. Updates coming tomorrow.

QUESTION FOR DISCUSSION (leave a comment below): Other than the need for Jesus, what are the greatest needs of people in the Williams Gateway/Queen Creek community (physical, economic, social, emotional, mental, educational, spiritual and moral)?

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