It's my church - Yet I do now own it.
By default, I'm one of the older members - but I'm not an elder.
People look to me for leadership, - but I'm not a leader.
Although we were founded only six years ago, and we have a lot of young
people - we're not a young church.
People come and go, - yet I seem to stay around.
Our goal is Multiplication - but we seem not to be
Our goal is Multiculturalism - but we're neither multicultural, nor
are we diverse (2/3 Asian, 2/3 Female, 2/3 Students, 2/3 under 25yrs
Our goal is Mobilization - yet the further we go, the more we stay in
Community - We're committed to our
community, we've seen it change and we're a part of it. And yeah, we're
part of the gentrification, if not one of the outward signs of it. Thus
we're as much part of the community, as we are a community unto ourselves.
Social Justice - We hear about it, racial reconciliation.
And the paradox is that we minister to a community, where few of us
can afford to live. We're mostly middle class, we're very highly educated,
and for the most part removed from issues of injustice.
Urban Ministry - We're committed to the city. For better
or worse, even though we've all grown up in the suburbs, and most of
the people we influence will eventually return there.
World Missions - We're committed
to sending people overseas.
We're mostly a conservative church, so it's difficult
to relate the social dynamics.
The paradox is that, as a church the thing we do
best is minister to the students. Yet somehow ministering to college
students from Harvard, MIT and Wellesley, seems to be antithetical to
the goal of being both part of the community
1) Students are notorious for NOT being integrated
with the community, they seem to operated outside greater society,
they live in their own little world. If graduation is viewed as entry
into the real world, then consequently their lives in college can
only be seen as sheltered and separated from the world.
2) Ministering to the poor, starving students be darned, these students
aren't poor by any stretch, the income potential alone vested within
their educations amounts to an economic injustice.
3) We may indeed develop a core group of people, willing to stay,
but are constantly struggling with the forces that pull people apart.
Since most of our congregation has no roots here, they are easily
swayed, by needs of family, for work, or for further schooling. A
lot of them do mature and move to the suburbs from which they came.
All churches wax and wane in their influence, and
this one is no different. The Senior pastor who inspired me to come
back to christ is now gone, off to pursue where God is calling him.
Those who have replaced