Another Conference…So What’s Different?

5 02 2008

by Tom Sine, Mustard Seed Associates

Conference logoIn the last few weeks, several people have asked me, “What’s different about The New Conspirators conference?” It is a fair questions. One might be tempted to think it will be exactly like all the other emerging church conferences that are happening now. Let me try to explain some elements of our conference that we hope are not only new, but valued by those that come to this gathering on February 28, 29 and March 1 at Bethany Community Church here in Seattle.

Distinctive 1: Hearing from four streams instead of one
Distinctive 2: Bringing new expressions and established congregations together
Distinctive 3: Exploring questions important for the entire church
Distinctive 4: Taking the future of God seriously
Distinctive 5: Taking the future of the world seriously
Distinctive 6: Taking our imaginations seriously
Distinctive 7: Taking connections seriously

Click here to read more about the distinctive characteristics of The New Conspirators.


Practicing Our Values

5 02 2008

by Christine Sine, Mustard Seed Associates

“One of the greatest challenges we always face as we start to plan a conference is how to convey the kingdom values that are central to who we are at Mustard Seed Associates. I teach a class on urban ministry and cross-cultural adaptation, and one of the questions I like to ask is: ‘What will the culture of the kingdom of God look like?’ Most of us have no idea. I believe that God’s love and compassion, justice for the poor, concern for those at the margins, freedom from oppression and good stewardship of God’s creation will be at the center of God’s kingdom. Many people will probably get a shock when they enter the kingdom because it will be a real cross-cultural experience for them.

“It is the vision of this ‘shalom kingdom’ that is at the center of all we are and do at Mustard Seed Associates, in which God’s eternal family from every tribe and nation–rich and poor, young and old–live together in the midst of a restored creation in harmony, mutual care and peace, not just with God but will all who are part of God’s international community.”

Read more about how we hope to practice our values at the conference here.

Liturgy: The Breviary–Week 1, Tuesday Evening

5 02 2008

from Missio Dei,

The Breviary logo

Call to Praise
After a time of reflective silence, proclaim:
“Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind.” This is the first and greatest commandment. And the second is like it: “Love your neighbor as yourself.” All the Law and the Prophets hang on these two commandments.

Psalm 15
A psalm of David.
LORD, who may dwell in your sanctuary?
Who may live on your holy mountain?
Those whose walk is blameless,
who do what is righteous,
who speak the truth from their hearts;
who have no slander on their tongues,
who do their neighbors no wrong,
who cast no slur on others;
who despise those whose ways are vile
but honor whoever fears the LORD;
who keep their oaths even when it hurts;
who lend money to the poor without interest
and do not accept bribes against the innocent.
Whoever does these things
will never be shaken.

To read the whole Tuesday Evening liturgy, click here.
For information on The Breviary from Missio Dei, click here.

Seed Share: The House–A New Hybrid in Seattle

5 02 2008
by Eric Likkel, Northwest Hot HouseThe House First Steps

“Churches come in all shapes and sizes. In the emerging stream of church planting, groups intentionally shape themselves for the place and people of their call.

“In some ways, it is like choosing the best vehicle for the journey. To reach some destinations, you fly in a large airplane. Other places are best reached on a bicycle. Most of us value the variety of vehicles available to us, and we do not imagine constructing future travel by always choosing a bicycle over an airplane, or vice versa. In fact, not only will we embrace different kinds of vehicles at different times, we are excited by the advancement of hybrids! Likewise, in reaching out to people, neighborhoods, and cities, we welcome a varity of vehicles and approaches in ministry, including hybrids. We recognize how ‘necessity is the mother [and God is the Father] of invention.’ You might say this is one of the driving impulses of the fresh expressions of church today.”

Click here to read more about The House, a hybrid congregation engaged in the Wedgewood and Ravenna neighborhoods of Seattle.

Advent Resources 2007: Liturgy–Prepare the Way of the Lord (Second Sunday)

30 11 2007

Liturgy Alive,

“Has Jesus Christ come or is he still to come? For many he has not yet come, for most of the world does not follow him. Even among his followers, many do not live in the way he taught us. The world he wanted us to build up is still a dream of the future, not the reality of the present. What are we going to do about it? We must change, and then out world will change. We ask the Lord Jesus in this Eucharist to prepare his deeper coming among us.”

Download the whole liturgy for the Second Sunday of Advent.

Click here for the First Sunday of Advent.
Click here for the Third Sunday of Advent.
Click here for the Fourth Sunday of Advent.

Advent Resources 2007: Hearing Old Testament Texts

30 11 2007

by Dennis Bratcher, CRI/Voice, Institute

the jesse tree“It is often easy to take the Old Testament readings for the season of Advent as little more than prologue, the preliminaries that set the stage for the main attraction. There is certainly one sense in which that is true as we focus on expectation, hope, and God’s future work in history. Liturgically, that does generate an eagerness to “move on,” especially as we anticipate the Second Advent in the Advent season.

Yet, in terms of understanding and faithfully proclaiming the message of the Old Testament as Scripture, we cannot so easily relegate it to such a secondary role. It is true that some perspectives on the nature of Scripture see the Old Testament, particularly the prophetic traditions, in terms of historical prediction that only awaits the unfolding of history to vindicate the truth of the prediction. The validity and authority of Scripture is then established by the direct correspondence of late events to that prediction.”

To read the whole article, click here.

To read about the Jesse Tree and to find out how to make one, click here.

Advent Resources 2007

26 11 2007

Here is the latest from Christine Sine on YouTube, set to “Let Your Kingdom Come” by Tracy Howe: