My daughter came to Connect on Sunday just as we were tidying up from our shared lunch together. Living in Wellington she had not been to one of our services for a few years. Her comment to me was “Wow, Connect has really become culturally diverse. That’s awesome!”
Leadership’s discerned vision for our church for 2016 / 2017 is this:
“Connect Baptist Church will be a thriving multi-ethnic community, expressing worship by:
- deepening prayer
- increased involvement in evangelism
- multi-faceted groups supporting growth in discipleship and fellowship
- understanding and practising spiritual warfare
How we achieve this vision may look different for particular cultures. One of the problems we face moving forwards is how we truly embrace multi-ethnic community. Ten years ago it was OK to “be church” in a very “pakeha” way. This is no longer the case. We are not who we once were and therefore we must embrace change. Taking a Chinese funeral this week I began the service by “thanking” many people. In Chinese Singaporean culture this is offensive because you are basically inviting them back for another funeral!! Pastoral blooper! There is so much to learn about each of our cultures so that we can truly “be authentic church” together. No one culture should dominate, and if we do unintentionally offend each other then we need to be told in love. So let’s start inviting each other into our homes for meals and start sharing stories. What do we need to change/include if we are to truly embrace our cultural diversity, and achieve the above vision, participating with Jesus in His mission to the world?
What would you, in your culture do to achieve the above church vision?
Please email Pastor Julie with your ideas. firstname.lastname@example.org
Bless you heaps, Julie xxoo