A really thoughtful and challenging post about how we teach and learn in church… I’d be interested to hear about any churches that have developed into this, and how they found it…

Holy Soup

People are leaving their churches because they feel excluded. Excluded from participating in the communication of the message.

This is one of the unanticipated findings in sociologist Josh Packard’s research on the Dones–formerly active church members who have walked away from all institutional religion. These are people who have heard countless sermons. They tend to be quite biblically literate. But they grew weary, very weary, of sitting in pew, feeling muzzled, while the person on stage monopolized every word.

In his new book Church Refugees, Packard describes Liam who left his lifelong church because he “wanted dialogue as opposed to lecture.” Rather than only passively listen to the pastor’s take on matters of faith, Liam wanted to participate somehow. He had questions. But the one-way communication format at his church would not allow for any interchange. “It was all authority and hierarchy,” he said. “And that was the final straw in getting…

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