Posts Tagged "church"

Church: A snapshot of one congregation…

Posted by on Sep 23, 2016 in Blog | 4 comments

Rosemary and I were in the UK recently and finding ourselves free on the Sunday morning, decided to attend the Church of England service taking place across the road from our hotel. Struggle one was finding the entrance,  though once spotted, it was clear enough. There were about 60 in the congregation, and we had gathered for the sung Eucharist – the only service being held that day. I know nothing about the congregation, but several things struck me… There was a warmth of welcome that was very reassuring. An elderly man at the door immediately said to us, ‘I don’t...

Read More

Is there a place for denominations?

Posted by on Sep 6, 2016 in Blog | 2 comments

It has become common to declare that we live in a post-denominational era. Increasingly church attenders are indifferent to the label a particular congregation might carry… Presbyterian, Baptist, Vineyard, Church of Christ… whatever. Indeed, many churches declare to the public that they are simply the local community church, sometimes using a verb to describe their ministry (Impact Church, Encounter Church, Dreambuilders Church…). Often these churches have a denominational allegiance, but prefer to downplay this, mentioning it only in the small print, if at all. Knowing...

Read More

Three challenges facing Christians…

Posted by on Aug 5, 2016 in Blog | 5 comments

Those of us who are embedded in healthy church communities sometimes wonder why there are so many who are not. Put differently, at a time when it is so easy to track down information about Jesus and to learn about his teaching, why are so many deciding that following him has little appeal. A fair amount of the negative response can probably be put down to the negative publicity surrounding the church, with people thinking, ‘well, if that’s the community he founded, count me out.’ But it is not just that. If you ask me what I think the three greatest challenges facing Christians in the...

Read More

Why do we preach? And should we…

Posted by on Jul 26, 2016 in Blog | 3 comments

My home church is Carey Baptist in Perth, and at present our night time service is asking some questions about basic church practices – like why we preach, take communion, worship, and others. I got to kick the series off by trying to answer the question, “why do we preach?” and it did feel a little strange to give a sermon about giving sermons. But overall it was a good experience and even seemed to mean something to some, so here the notes are. Hope it answers some of your questions, and if not, do post them… It is alleged (probably incorrectly) that St Francis of...

Read More

On turning 59…

Posted by on Jul 15, 2016 in Blog | 8 comments

I turned 59 on Wednesday. It’s an awkward kind of a birthday 59 – it feels like an unspecified space. When you turn 39 or 49 people joke, ‘almost 40’ or ‘almost 50’. But 59 is different. People politely say, ‘I would never have guessed it’ – as though you are about to enter territory too sad to fully acknowledge. Whatever, I had a ball on Wednesday, and am feeling remarkably positive about life. As I look back on 59 years, I feel an overwhelming sense of gratitude and delight… life has been a far more enjoyable ride than I ever...

Read More