Tuesday, June 5, 2012

Comings and Goings, Part II

More thoughts from my last post . . .

If more and more people are transient and not staying in one place or one place for a long time, what does that do to our churches and their identity? When you'd have generations at one church, a pastor would come and hear the story of the church from these members - what the church had been through, how the neighborhood changed, the past challenges. But without such folks to tell the story, that church is different. I know in my own congregation, which is only about ten years old, I have only a handful of people who were here at the beginning. The rest have come since and don't know about the beginning challenges and struggles. Who will tell the story?

Now, I think there is a pro to this as well. For it means that the story of the congregation would not be about the congregation at all, but more focused on Christ and His work among them. For He is the constant - not any of the members, the building, the neighborhood, or those things. That also means that good, sound - and ongoing - catechesis is more important than ever. A core of good, solid members cannot be assumed when people come and go so much. Sadly, though, I know many folks who tell me they haven't been catechized well.

That means that if our churches are losing their story because of the transience of our society these days, and our churches are losing their story because of minimal or inadequate catechesis, then the very real danger is that we will have churches who do not know who they are and are therefore open to the whims and winds of every kind of teaching and fad. And I think this can be seen in some churches today.

What is the answer? Check back tomorrow . . .  :-)

And what do you think of all this? Is my analysis correct? Off base?

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