Friday, March 20, 2009

"Change in Tide" - part 4

Translation of the article "Mudança de Maré", published by "Cristianismo Hoje" (Christianity Today), issue #9, in Brazil, written by Sulamita Ricardo.

Translation by Gustavo K-fé Frederico.

( See part 1 here. See part 2 here. See part 3 here.)

Continuing. Part 4:


"Tired" - The [business] administrator Luís Fernando Batista - host of the site Renovatio Café, which makes content available related to the movement, points out that the Emerging Church should not be used as a pretext for the believer not to get involved in a local church. "Many that speak about the movement have no true involvement with the mission and only act because of hurts with some traditional church, what triggers wrong observations". "They are only admirers of any evangelical thing outside the model of [a] traditional church, of which they are tired". Batista says that he saw in the web site of a church in the United States an announcement of three worship services Sunday morning: the first one traditional with hymns and the organ; the second one with a contemporary focus with PowerPoint presentations and drama. The third one was the emerging serice, with candles and alternative rock. "Congregations that insist in presenting themselves as emerging want to position themselves this way as the churches that follow the latest fashion".

However, he bets that soon there will be a post-evangelical generation which will reject the church without abandoning the respect for the person of Jesus. "It is for acting in this area that revolutionary movements appear, not only interested in changing the form of the church, but in leaving the mark of Christ in society". For Sandro Baggio, the challenge of the emerging movement is to pass the initial stage, in which, he believes, it is still found. "The Emerging Church needs to move on from the deconstruction phase to the edification phase", he points out.

Dan Kimball, in turn, another leader of this alternative way of making church, prefers not even to use the terminology of the movement. For that reason, he and professor Scot McKnight formed a new network, temporarily called Origins. In his opinion, the Emerg[ent] Church developed amidst many theological branches. "The definition of what is emerg[ent] changed", he maintains. "However, I will continue to defend and to work for the ideals of the Emerg[ing] Church, for it represents evangelism and missions for a new generation rising."


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