That guy looking stumped into blankness is not meditating nor being hypnotized but is actually thinking about how to answer the questions about his church Solomon’s Porch. And yes, that guy is Doug Pagitt and his birthday was this week. Some leaders of Emergent Village get interviewed at PBS online which is worth a read, and worth waiting for part 2 which will be posted next week. HT Kevin Cawley. And BTW, the Wiki defintion of Emerging Church is now updated and improved, and includes an excellent quote from Chris Seay – “It should be clear we are championing the gospel and missional values, not what (some) describe as ‘ministry intentionally influenced by postmodern theory.’”
It is that kind of clarity we need when talking to the media about why emerging church is often looking different than traditional church. Its a missional thang, NOT a postmodern thang. We are going back to the Bible and taking it seriously, NOT discarding it in favor of French deconstructionists of the 1970’s.
As for the concept of “post-emerging” (Ginkworld), it may be helpful to think of emerging church in 3 stages:
1. Submerging – those going deep into culture to listen, think, pray, and share the gospel among the emerging culture.
2. Emerging – When the new church structures begin to rise up and take shape organically inside the culture, a process that will often be described as having “emergent characteristics” and displaying “emergent behavior”.
3. Converging – When the new church structures begin to connect to the other existing structures, local and global, and form part of the web that is the body of Christ.
Of course, if you present these options to churches, they will normally choose the one that is most advanced and complete, no matter where they are in this process. But it might help those who have been going 15 years and are now part of the church fabric, despite growing up with emerging culture people.