As I have gathered with other leaders from around metro Denver, a question that has come to us for 2009 is: “How can simple churches and institutional churches work together? (I especially want to hear from YOU the readers of this blog on this question!)
To start the discussion, I asked a few close friends or family who are Pastors in the institutional church. Here is what they had to say:
Cooperation will likely occur in direct proportion to the degree to which we recognize the similarity of our mission and the validity of different strategies and methods for it accomplishment. The more we focus on what we share in common, which far outweighs in importance what is different about us, the greater the likelihood that we can be mutually strengthened and increasingly effective.
Jack Rants (my Dad!), Pulpit Rock Church
- Although demonstrating our love (orthopraxy) lets the world know we are followers of Jesus, the other wing of the plane is what we believe (orthodoxy). In my opinion you need to keep these extremes balanced.
- At the risk of simplicity the institutional church has been accused of over-emphasizing orthodoxy and the simple church model orthopraxy.
- Find initiatives that blend both. Less is more on orthodoxy. Make it simple. Apostles’ Creed is a good start.
Kary Oberbrunner (Best man from my wedding!), Pastor and Author of The Fine Line
I guess I would lean more in the “mission” direction than I would the “worship.” I think the best place to start is in working together on some very tangible relief projects in the community. Any church that refuses to realize the binding mandate to love our neighbor tangibly is not one I would strain too much to pursue in an effort like this.
A coalition would probably make some churches nervous about “contamination,” but an “operation: denver relief” type thing would be amazing.
Frankly, I could leave philosophical unity if we were united in tangibly reflecting the love of Christ to the needy and marginalized etc.
Kondo Simfukwe (my Brother-in-law), Pastor at Christ’s Covenant Church
Now it’s your turn? What are your thoughts and ideas?