Category: church

This is the ‘vision’ I see panning out for the youth work/ministry at Malmesbury Abbey.  Its based on the our core values of youth work: voluntary participation, empowerment, equality of opportunity and informal education.  And a few ideas that I have stolen from other book etc.


I really like DEEP & WIDE from Dare2Share , I came across it through Life in Student Ministry but I found that their strategy for implementing DEEP & WIDE would not translate well into my context so I ‘borrowed’ the terms but left the strategy!

DEEP & WIDE helps us know WHAT we are.

Abbey youth…a missional community striving to go DEEP into God’s love and WIDE into the world


I made us of some of the  Purpose Driven Youth Ministry first because it makes you ask WHY.  Then the ‘target audience’ part makes you ask WHO.  The TA I think is far to rigid and we live a much more fluid world then I think TA gives credit but I use TA for big brushstrokes.


I inherited a lot of great youth ministry.  And at one level I had to think how it could fit into the above.  Fortunately I didn’t have too much trouble.  This is how I think it all fits together…


are we trying to reach?

Main Group


is our aim?

Main Aim


will we try to do this?


Community (no contact) WIDE (Evangelism) Detached (not yet in place)
Congregation (Some contact) WIDE (Evangelism) Friday Night Thing (open aimed at non-churched)
Committed (Regular contact) DEEP (Discipleship) Pipeline/Trax
Core (Leader) DEEP (Discipleship) Pipeline +


  • Is shaped a great deal from inherited youth work
  • Has to work in mid-sized church
  • I need to expand on missional
  • A lot of the current youth ministry focuses on DEEP need more WIDE
  • It quite modernistic

This is one of my first blog posts a long time ago.  I was re-looking at it and thought it was quite interesting inlight of how the emerging church, mission has developed, also since I have done a degree in youth work.  Moreover, with Mark Oestreicher’s Youth Ministry 3.0.

Mark Driscoll the pastor of Mars Hill Church Seattle, USA, has a really interesting post here on Church 3.0. I have put the post into a grid to see the different ‘grades’ of church side by side:




In this version, the church is traditional and institutional…

Today’s dominant church form is contemporary and seeker-sensitive…

This incarnation of the church emerging and missional…

The cultural context is modern.

The cultural context is somewhere between modern and postmodern.

The cultural context is postmodern and pluralistic.

The church expects to have a privileged place in the larger culture.

A culture war is being fought to regain a lost position of privilege.

The church accepts that it’s marginalized in culture.

Pastors are servants and teachers.

Pastors are CEOs.

Pastors are local missionaries.

The whole church are local missionaries.

Church services are marked by traditions most comforting to Christians, such as choirs, robes, hymnals, and organs.

Church services recycle 1980s and 1990s pop culture, such as acoustic guitars and drama, in an effort to attract non-Christian seekers.

Church services blend ancient forms and current local styles.

Do we have to have ‘Church services’?

Missions involves sending Americans and dollars overseas through denominations and missions agencies.

Missions is a church department that organizes overseas trips and funding.

Missions is “glocal” (global and local).

Along with the emergence of Church 3.0, an escalating debate is being raised over such cultural issues as sexuality and gender, as well as theological issues such as the atonement and hell. In the coming months this column will further explore the emerging controversies and trends of Church 3.0.

I have found this a really interesting post and has got me thinking about Youth Ministry 3.0:

  • What would that look like?
  • How would Youth Ministry 3.0 fit into Church 3.0?
  • How can church/Youth ministry 2.0 move to 3.0?

I think that Youth Ministry if often the first area to upgrade in a church and so often is already 3.0, but the rest of the church is still 1.0/2.0…

I like this photo essay by Steve Collins called urban church.

What Would Jesus Buy? What a great question to ask ourselves and help young people to ask as well. I think it raises so many questions about power, trade, and ultimately…us, the consumes.

Its interesting that the makers have chosen to use the gimmick of WWJD and a church minister. Why the religious imagery to get across a social message, is it just the Christmas thing or is it that really we, the church, should be asking these questions and we are not? Just a thought.

I like the look of this film, will have to ‘buy’ it!

There is a post over at Rethinking Youth Ministry about the The Blasphemy Challenge that “Basically, this is a group of atheists, led by a thirty-year-old…, that challenges individuals, specifically youth, to deny, on camera, God, Jesus, and the Holy Spirit…”

I found it really interesting to watch the news reports on The Blasphemy Challenge website. I think that the interviewer on Fox (who irritated me a lot more then the atheist), was just trying to argue for Christendom values and not for Christ. I think that this is what people are afraid off, people want nice ‘Christian’ young people who will uphold societies Christendom statuesque, not swear, not do drugs and be ‘nice’ because Jesus was ‘nice’. And atheism threatens the ‘nice’ statuesque. Yet Christendom is not the radical good news of liberation and wholeness through Christ. Christendom is political (Constantine), empire and oppressive. The Blasphemy Challenge is just attacking Christendom, which in the US is on its way out (The Blasphemy Challenge is one of many signs of this) and in Europe is almost dead and buried, and good ridderns, the sooner the last nail is hammered into Christendom’s coffin the sooner the Good News of Christ can break through. Christendom has done 10 fold more damage for the Good News of Christ then atheism could ever have done (look at the church in China under a atheistic oppressive regime compared to the church in Europe under Christendom).

The Blasphemy Challenge, are targeting teenagers just like we do, we know that we can manipulate teenagers, and we do, thinking that we are doing it for their own good… yet so are the people at The Blasphemy Challenge. Maybe we just see our own techniques mirrored in the techniques The Blasphemy Challenge and we don’t like what we see.

Lets not let this be yet another Christian crusade to stamp out the unclean atheists, but let us use this to enter into some thought-out intelligent rational dialogue, lets listen and listen some more, accepting that maybe God can speak to the church through the concerns of atheists instead of us just giving more fuel to their fire (like death threats).

Relevant has an interesting article here by Doug Pagitt (Church Re-imagined: The Spiritual Formation of People in Communities of Faith (Emergentys) , Preaching Re-imagined: The Role of the Sermon in Communities of Faith (Emergent YS),Bodyprayer: The Posture of Intimacy with God) of Solomons Porch church regarding a ‘list of tendencies, passions and perspectives of churches that call themselves emerging’. The headings are:

• Emerging Churches strive to be positive about the future.
• Churches within the emerging community are committed to God in the way of Jesus.
• The Kingdom of God is a central conversation in emerging communities.
• The emerging church values communal life – living like family.
• Emerging churches seek to live as missional communities.
• Friendship and hospitality are transformational pieces in the emerging church.
• Communities in the emerging movement value theology.

TallSkinnyKiwi has a really interesting post The WiFi Enabled Church, posts like this really get me thinking about so many possibilities for church and ministry, so many tools, so many possibilities. The problem being that having these tools is fine for churches and communities that have the £, $, €. But what about churches in poor communities, can wifi be a realistic possibility when no one has the tec to connect and take advantage of the possibilities? Or maybe these churches should provide the tec so that there communities can access the church from an education point of view and start to bridge the tec gap…

I really love this quote on jonnybaker Blog from Howard Snyder’s book ‘liberating the church’

“The church gets in trouble whenever it thinks its in the church business rather than the Kingdom business. In the church business people are concerned with church activities, religious behaviour and spiritual things. In the Kingdom business people are concerned with Kingdom activities, all human behaviour and everything God has made, visible and invisible. Kingdom people see human affairs as saturated with spiritual meaning and Kingdom significance.

Kingdom people seek first the Kingdom of God and its justice; church people often put church work above concerns of justice, mercy and truth. Church people often think about how to get people into church; Kingdom people think about how to get the church into the world. Church people worry that the world might change the church; Kingdom people work to see the church chnage the world.

When Christians put the church ahead of the Kingdom they settle for the status quo and their own kind of people. When they catch a vision of the Kingdom of God their sights shift to the poor, the orphan, the widow, the refugee ‘the wretched of the earth’ and to God’s future. They see the life and work of the church from the perspective of the Kingdom.

If the church has one great need it is this: to be set free for the Kingdom of God, to be liberated from itself as it has become in order to be itself as God intends…”