When you use a word…

Missional…I can hear the groans. In church circles (does anyone else use that word?) the word missional is overused and ill-defined. That makes it practically useless. Yet, it seems church folks insist on using it. It goes a step further. Often people use the word missional to communicate something important/distinct/etc. while actually complaining that theContinue reading “When you use a word…”

Endangered denominations?

As the local church goes, so go the denominations and institutions that support her. The local church can do without denominations. Denominations can’t do without the local church. This reality calls for a radical shift in focus (or, perhaps, purpose) for denominations (and the institutions that support the church). We need to shift our focusContinue reading “Endangered denominations?”

It’s the local church…

It’s the economy, stupid! James Carville During Bill Clinton’s 1992 presidential campaign, campaign director James Carville famously said, “It’s the economy, stupid!” Carville believed that the primary thing that mattered to voters was the economy. If you can’t see that, according to Carville, you’re stupid. I work for a church denomination(MC USA). I’m often askedContinue reading “It’s the local church…”

Leadership: The relationship between church and business

If I ran a business the way you run the church, it would be bankrupt Raise your hand if you’re a pastor or church leader and you’ve ever heard that complaint!  I see that hand…and that one…and that one… This is a common sentiment that gets expressed when poor leadership practices are clearly hurting theContinue reading “Leadership: The relationship between church and business”

Avoiding the idol of unity…

I hear the world UNITY a lot in Mennonite Church USA these days. I suspect it is because the possibility of division rooted in disagreements looms large. In order to hedge against that reality, there are many calls to unity. It’s not that I don’t believe unity is God’s plan and purpose. I believe itContinue reading “Avoiding the idol of unity…”

MC USA: What’s at Stake for You in This?

What’s at stake for you in this? The first time someone asked me that question, I did the avoidance two-step. I didn’t know how to answer the question. I had never been asked that question before. I wasn’t sure I even understood the question. The more I thought about it – and the clearer the questionContinue reading “MC USA: What’s at Stake for You in This?”