Saturday, May 13, 2006

Appendix Three: Names, Groups and Events Associated with Emergent

Names Closely Associated with EC

Ryan Bolger is assistant professor of church in contemporary culture in the School of Intercultural Studies at Fuller Theological Seminary. He is the coauthor (with Eddie Gibbs) of Emerging Churches: Creating Christian Communities in Postmodern Cultures.

John Burke is pastor of Gateway Community Church in Austin, Texas. He is also the president of Emerging Leadership Initiative (ELI), a non-profit organization founded to help establish a multiplying network of missiological churches that envision, equip, and empower young emerging leaders to plant innovative churches. John is the author of No Perfect People Allowed.

Tony Jones is the national coordinator of Emergent U.S., a growing, generative network of missional Christian leaders. Tony is also a doctoral fellow and senior research fellow at Princeton Theological Seminary and the author of five books, including Postmodern Youth Ministry and The Sacred Way.

Dan Kimball is the pastor of Vintage Faith Church in Santa Cruz, California. He is the author of The Emerging Church and Emerging Worship. His forthcoming book is titled They Like Jesus but Not the Church.

Scot McKnight is the Karl A. Olsson professor in religious studies at North Park University. He has lectured at various universities and is the author or editor of more than ten books, including his book on spiritual formation, The Jesus Creed: Loving God, Loving Others.

Doug Pagitt is pastor of Solomon's Porch, a holistic, missional, Christian community in Minneapolis, Minnesota. He is also a part of the leadership of Emergent and is the author of Preaching Re-Imagined and Church Re-Imagined.

LeRon Shults is a professor of theology at Bethel Theological Seminary and is an author of several books, textbooks, and articles. His most recent book is Reforming the Doctrine of God.

Chris Seay is a leader in the emerging church discussion and highly regarded for his innovative thinking. He was the founding pastor of University Baptist Church in Waco, Texas, one of the earliest examples of generational church planting. He pastors Ecclesia of Houston, Texas, and is the author of The Gospel According to Tony Soprano, Faith of My Fathers, and The Gospel Reloaded.

Shane Claiborne is one of the founding members of The Simple Way, a radical faith community that lives among and serves the homeless in North Philadelphia. Serving on the board of directors for the Christian Community Development Association, Shane also writes and travels extensively, speaking about peacemaking, social justice, and Jesus. He is the author of The Irresistible Revolution.

Tony Campolo is professor emeritus of sociology at Eastern University in St. Davids, Pennsylvania. The author of thirty-two books, his most recent titles are Speaking My Mind, Which Jesus, The Church Enslaved (coauthored by Michael Battle), and The Survival Guide for Christians on Campus (coauthored by Will Willimon).

Donald Miller is the author of Blue Like Jazz as well as many other books. He is a frequent speaker at colleges and conferences across the country, addressing the relevancy of Christian spirituality to explain and heal the dynamics of the human heart.

Most of the above list is from a promotional piece for a workshop entitled The Emerging Church: Theology and Practice, Multiple Perspectives on the Issues held at the National Pastor’s Conference in February, 2006.



Jason Clark (England)

Matthew Glock (France)

Sivin Kit (Malaysia)

Claude Nikondeha (Africa)

Tomas Yaccino (Latin America)

Don Crawford (Canada)

Resonate (Canada)

Gary Dickenson (Latvia)


Rob Bell - Mars Hill's teaching pastor, Rob Bell, hair tousled and reddish brown, hops on stage in the center of what must have been the mall's anchor store. The huge space has been redecorated in utilitarian gray; a wooden cross reaches from floor to ceiling. Communion elements—the broken crackers and grape juice that are standard issue at Bible churches of every generation—are set at its base.

Bell is almost certainly the only pastor to have begun a megachurch-planting career with a sermon series from the book of Leviticus. Today Bell's text—the story of Jesus rebuking Peter for drawing his sword in the Garden of Gethsemane—is more conventional. Bell has the comic timing, the charisma, and the confidence you'd expect from someone who speaks to thousands every week. And he has a gift for the preacher's memorable phrase. "Swords appear strong," Bell says, "but they're actually quite weak. Jesus appears weak, but he's actually quite strong." Inviting his congregation to embrace weakness, referring to Paul's words about his own infirmity in 2 Corinthians, Bell takes up a refrain: "Weak is the new strong."

It's a pithy way of describing Jesus' upside-down kingdom, and it's a striking way of introducing a Communion service at the foot of a large cross. But "Weak is the new strong" is also an allusion to fashion-industry dictates like "Gray is the new black." Bell is both echoing and subverting a fashion-driven culture of cool. You could say that he puts the hip in discipleship.

Clearly cultural relevance was part of the reason for planting a church whose worship team requires a bass player who can play "in the style of Jimmy Eat World and Coldplay." No generation has ever been more alert to such nuances than the media-fed children of the 1980s and '90s, who can sense uncoolness at a thousand paces. As Rob Bell's wife, Kristen, tells CT in a joint interview after the service, "It's a cultural jump for our friends to come to church. It's a cultural jump for us, and we grew up in the church."

But it quickly becomes clear that these Wheaton College sweethearts have more on their minds than just cultural adaptation. "This is not just the same old message with new methods," Rob says. "We're rediscovering Christianity as an Eastern religion, as a way of life. Legal metaphors for faith don't deliver a way of life. We grew up in churches where people knew the nine verses why we don't speak in tongues, but had never experienced the overwhelming presence of God."

In fact, as the Bells describe it, after launching Mars Hill in 1999, they found themselves increasingly uncomfortable with church. "Life in the church had become so small," Kristen says. "It had worked for me for a long time. Then it stopped working." The Bells started questioning their assumptions about the Bible itself—"discovering the Bible as a human product," as Rob puts it, rather than the product of divine fiat. "The Bible is still in the center for us," Rob says, "but it's a different kind of center. We want to embrace mystery, rather than conquer it."

"I grew up thinking that we've figured out the Bible," Kristen says, "that we knew what it means. Now I have no idea what most of it means. And yet I feel like life is big again—like life used to be black and white, and now it's in color."

The more I talk with the Bells, the more aware I am that they are telling me a conversion narrative—not a story of salvation in the strict sense, but of having been delivered from a small life into a big life. The Bells, who flourished at evangelical institutions from Wheaton to Fuller Theological Seminary to Grand Rapids's Calvary Church before starting Mars Hill, were by their own account happy and successful young evangelicals. Yet that very world, as the Bells tell it, became constricting—in Kristen's phrase, "black and white."

An earlier generation of evangelicals, forged in battles with 20th-century liberalism, prided themselves on avoiding theological shades of gray, but their children see black, white, and gray as all equally unlifelike. They are looking for a faith that is colorful enough for their culturally savvy friends, deep enough for mystery, big enough for their own doubts. To get there, they are willing to abandon some long-defended battle lines.

"Weak is the new strong," it turns out, is not just Rob Bell's knowing reference to the world of fashion, nor just his clever reframing of Paul's message of Christlike life. It's a roadmap for a new way of doing church, even a big church.

And how did the Bells find their way out of the black-and-white world where they had been so successful and so dissatisfied? "Our lifeboat," Kristen says, "was A New Kind of Christian." Accessed on April 4, 2006.


Spencer Burke - During the past 22 years of ministry, Spencer has explored his passion for arts, technology and the Church. As an accomplished photographer he has exhibited his work at galleries and taught at the University level. Humorous, inspirational and surprising are words people use to describe his story-telling speaking style. Read more about Spencers story.

He is a sucker for the latest gadget and if money wasn’t an object, he would have the newest, fastest and best in technology at his fingertips.

Spencer now serves at both THEOOZE and at his church, ROCKharbor, in Costa Mesa, California. As creator and sustainer of THEOOZE, Spencer has the opportunity to merge all of his passions together into one organization as he strives to understand what being a real and authentic follower of Jesus means in our world. ROCKharbor gives him the privilege to serve on the elder board, the speaking team, and as strategic planner, facilitator and counselor to the staff.

THEOOZE is a metaphor for Spencer’s ministry—on the move, unpredictable, non-linear, journey- rather than destination-oriented. THEOOZE creates environments where church leaders (traditional teachers/theologians as well as emerging storytellers/artists) can converse about and collaborate on resources and training for the broader faith community. This is done by providing places for people to gather and communicate both online and offline about how to bring the story of Christ to our emerging culture.

Spencer and his five-year-old boy Alden, one-year-old baby girl Grace, and lovely wife of 17 years, Lisa, reside in their turn of the century beach shack in Southern California. accessed on April 4, 2006.


Tim Keel - stats: 36 years old: married to mimi: father of three great kids: mabry, annie, and blaise: we live in kansas city, mo: pastor of jacob's well church: our community is about six years old: the church is in midtown: we are a group of people seeking to become an authentic, biblical community: we want to experience and express the reality of God's love as followers of Jesus: part of emergent.: glad you're here:. accessed on April 4, 2006.


Churches Closely Associated with EC

· Jacob's Well - Kansas City , MO

· Three Nails - Pittsburgh , PA

· Solomon's Porch - Minneapolis , MN

· Cedar Ridge Community Church - Spencerville, MD

· Church of the Apostles - Seattle , WA

· Ecclesia - Houston , TX

· Bluer - Minneapolis , MN

· Vintage Faith - Santa Cruz , CA


andrew said...


thanks for brother Paul who has brought these ministries and leaders to our attention.

Bless the works of their hands, shield them from attacks of the evil one, give wisdom and perseverence, assist them in bringing the gospel of Jesus to those in the emerging culture. And help them all to communicate clearly what you are doing through them so that the body of Christ moves forward together.


Caleb Kolstad said...

Thanks for your work here!


kerux said...

Thanks for the encouragement, Caleb.

Amaya Sakura said...

if you r god's worker, u must hate me...i live for satan

kerux said...

Amaya -

Far from it. Even though I do not know you, I can tell you I love you and wish only the best for you - which is fleeing from Satan to Jesus, the true Saviour.

Live for Jesus, and you will really live.