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Do we think that our worship is attractional in and of itself? Do we enjoy the smallness and intimacy of our congregational size? Do we see ourselves as The Other who need to be welcomed and included? Are we just still a bit rubbish at and embarrassed by talking about faith and engaging with and inviting people?

steve taylor

what abundant does sounds like simply targetting Christians ie people who already get (some of the) story? how is that missional?

if we want people outside the church, then we're competing with huge amounts of $ spent on clubbing, entertainment. it's a whole new network.



this is such a big issue for us... clubs here don't spend massive $ on advertising... most indy music, which would be our best comparison, is advertised very locally with posters, by networks etc. I don't think we're up against money, but we're up against reputation, and are searching for that elusive wedge that might give us a tipping point. And we're still working out a way to be honest about what we're inviting people to, that doesn't trick them into coming to something they would not otherwise choose to come to, and in a way that actually is inviting.

[and probably we're still searching for the confidence to say that we can hold our own against all the other saturday night options..]

all wisdom gratefully received...


i am not suggesting for a moment that church is solely about events or being attractional. i hope my post on curating beyond the canon and reflecting on art moving into public spaces suggests that. i also think haveing small communities is good and some things need to focus on that. our communities need to be guests in other spaces, get stuck into other things, go to other peoples parties and so on. of course...

...but if we are curating events/installations/art spaces/worship services then creating a public is a surely worth some effort and thought and a public that is beyond our existing circle if it is a small circle!

it can seem like other things have big budget and i agree steve - some do. but a lot don't - it's more doing the hard work of communication and putting creative energy into it i suspect the way cheryl describes things in melbourne. i don't have answers to this - i just feel the statement confronted me about a weakness of mine and perhaps many of us, though i am sure not all. the line 'we're doing it for ourselves' that people trot out as a notion of authenticity i understand and have used myself. it's also not wanting to see people as somehow a target market or like we have some big agenda - the honesty that is so important. but it also can be an excuse for not communicating that there is some wonderful treasure to be found. the pendulum could do with something of a nudge in the other direction.

abundant did have lots of christians but it created a social environment where lots of people brought friends - there was a huge fringe. i know some of those friendship networks still exist and can think of people who came to know christ through those networks. not sure if you know pete's book 'youthwork and the mission of god' but abundant was a healthy model of inside out (nucleus and fringe) in pete's language which is an attractional model of mission rather than his other model which is about going into a completely new community to grow something there - that tends to be what people mean by missional, but bothy are valid approaches to mission.


Good comments people.

> ...but if we are curating events/installations/art spaces/worship services then creating a public is a surely worth some effort and thought and a public that is beyond our existing circle if it is a small circle!

My point exactly, even if my questions were clumsly put. I do agree with you - let's try and nudge that pendulum. Now, how?...

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