In the good old days we used to use words like discipleship and Christian education. Now, everywhere I turn, I see the word FORMATION. It’s not a bad word. In many ways it’s much more holistic than Christian education, which bring to mind certain methodologies. It speaks to the big picture of how a person comes to be who they are. It’s just funny how words like this take hold and, suddenly, everyone is using them.
What remains to be seen is whether or not this is a new label attached to old ways of doing something, or whether or not old methodologies will be radically re-made (resurrected)! If it’s only a new way of talking, it’s nonsense. If it represents new approaches to discipleship (still the word that represents what the church is to be about) in our time, then I welcome it.
We just have to remember that resurrection is impossible without death! Until we let go of ineffective methodologies (especially in the church) and let the programs they gave birth to die, there will be no radical reformation.
It doesn’t matter what you call it if it doesn’t help people mature in their faith.
Time will tell.