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The alternative worship/emergent church movement has been underway in various incarnations throughout the UK for over twenty years, and has impacted the U.S. evangelical community since the 1990s. However, these influences are just now beginning to emerge within the mainline liturgical churches. What impact do these new ways of worshiping God have on the contemporary mainline church? Rising From the Ashes engages these questions through interwoven oral history-style interviews with people in mainline churches who are doing outside-the-box ministries and are at the forefront of exploring what it means to "be" the church in the 21st century. Critics of the emergent church movement are also included.
Churches everywhere are suffering from draconian funding cuts, so how do leaders with a heart for alternative ministries fund their passion and build communities that will last? Journalist and commentator Becky Garrison looks deep into the experience of nearly a dozen ministries in the United States and United Kingdom - all of them geared to the growing spiritual-but-not-religious demographic, and all of them highly creative ventures doing a lot with a little money. How did these ministries start from zero with $0? And how could you?
From Christian Piatt: "When I was a teenager, my youth minister threw a bible at my head for asking questions." Too often, for various reasons, people don't have the opportunity to ask the hard questions they have about faith, religion, salvation and the bible. And when questions are left unanswered in communities of faith, people either seek answers elsewhere or lose interest all together. The purpose of the series is to collect the most compelling and challenging questions from various theological areas and pose them to a panel of "experts" who are challenged with responding in two hundred words or less in plain English. This volume addresses challenging or controversial questions about scripture collected from people on Facebook, MySpace, Twitter and other social networking media. Respondents include theology professors, clergy, lay leaders, liberals, conservatives and voices representing a spectrum of views. The idea behind the books is not so much to provide definitive answers as it is to stimulate thought, reflection and discussion. By offering multiple perspectives, readers have the opportunity to arrive at their own questions. Better, they come to understand that questioning faith is not taboo, but rather that it can be at the foundation of a strong and growing faith. The directive given to each respondent guided them to be concise and to speak in plan language, but also not to rely exclusively on "the Bible says it" justifications, or to wax abstract or overly intellectual. Instead, they write from personal experience as much as possible, and provide real-life contexts that will allow the average seeker or churchgoer to apply such ideas to their daily lives.
Leaders constantly rely upon power. In fact, leadership and power have so much in common that their definitions are often functionally identical. Every act of leadership is an act of power. Hence, the better we understand power, the better we understand leadership. What, then, are the consequences if, as scholars argue, different people understand power differently and often fundamentally misunderstand power? One consequence turns out to be the emergence of a number of ironies. Another consequence is the opportunity to understand leadership settings better through a careful, redeeming, synergistic look at power. To that end, this book first presents roughly sixty studied, power-related dynamics, and then takes a closer look at how these dynamics clarify leadership settings. Ultimately, this study seeks a better understanding of a particular leadership setting--the local church. Challenges distinct to this setting are explored in marked sections, while the book as a whole offers useful lenses through which to assess the challenges all leaders navigate.
A challenge has been issued on matters of faith and Becky Garrison meets it head on in this witty yet poignant answer to the Anti-God gurus Richard Dawkins, Sam Harris, and Daniel Dennett. Becky Garrison, religious satirist and senior contributing editor for The Wittenberg Door, is taking a stand. Where most Christians assume the character of the Cowardly Lion chanting, "I do believe, I do believe, I do believe," Garrison refuses to simply thrust tracts at these self-proclaimed infidels. Instead, Garrison steels her pen and takes on the ungodly program of the New Atheists, skewering each argument with her sharp satiric wit. Garrison turns aside the atheists' assault without ignoring its real criticisms, namely, the church's inadequate response to war, evolution, medical ethics, social justice, and other important issues in the post-9/11 world.
Wonder where Jesus has gotten to lately? In Jesus Died for This? religious satirist Becky Garrison's search for the risen Christ first takes us where Jesus isn't before suggesting where he may be. Provocative, entertaining, and abundantly relevant, this book reminds us that if we truly seek to be more grace-filled, we'd do well to be more graceful in the pursuit.

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