Circuit Rider

Good stuff in this month’s Circuit Rider

From Nathan Kirkpatrick:

“Too often, when young leaders are discussed in meetings it is with a certain institutional desperation, as if clergy under 35 will fix all that presently ails the insitiution. Given the tone and tenor of many of these conversations, it would be understandable if young clergy came to see themselves as either the emerging leaders of an intitiution that is limping into its last days or as those who must change everything about the church if there is hope for its survival…

“It is tempting for young clergy to believe that we will make our ‘real’ contributions to the church’s life when we are serving as the senior pastor of the big steeple church, as a district superintendent, as a staff memeber of a general board of agency, or as a dean of a seminary. After all, these are the people we have been taught to see as ‘having power in the insitiution,’ and in many ways, these are the people who do have power. Often they feel more like bosses to us right now than partners with us. Yet, if we as young leaders believe the myth that the only meaningful change happens at these levels in the life of the church, we delude ourselves and abdicate our responsibility” (emphasis added)…

“Finally-It is essential that we have communities of accountability and support as we lean to lead in our own ways.”

And from Sara Thomas:

“I desire a church that claims our connectedness, embodies organic systems, and continually cultivates opportunities for people to become fully devoted followers of Jesus. We have a network buit into our nature as a connectional church; unfortunately, we do not use it well. I see every opportunity to create meaninful networks of churches, collaborating as teams to leverage influence for the kingdom. A tension exists when the competition with the church down the road becomes our primary connection. While healthy competition competition can motivate uswithin our connection creates both accountability and kingdom opportunity. I am not willing to sacrifice either.