The church as we know it today will not survive the next decade and… the Synergy network continues to develop…

The Christian Daily called Dagen addressed the development of the Synergy concept and network in their paper. Yesterday night the time had come to start a series of seminars organized by the Synergy workgroup. Approximately 60 people came to listen to Andrew Redman who addressed Powers of Invention.

Unfortunately I was not able to stick around to get an idea how the seminar was received by the participants since I had to leave to catch up with some sleep to be able to get up at 4.00 am to catch my flight at the Arlanda airport to Kopenhagen where pastors Ulf and Jörgen picked me up by car to bring me back to Sweden to preach in their church in Kristiansstad and to meet with their leadership team and board. (What a way to get to church: with our car to the airport, to Danmark, to Sweden to…. And back) During the 1,5 hour trip we talked about the development of the Church in Sweden and soe of the challenges they faced.

I was warmly welcomed by many members of the church and found the very interesting phenomenon of an older, changing local church in a town with 70,000 people. The changes which are taking place in their church are the kind that are close to my heart; from a rather homogeneous more typical Swedish Free Church, they find themselves challenged and enriched by the growing presence of many immigrants and “New Swedes”. The congregation is slowly moving into becoming a multi-cultural church.

Praise God! My deep inner conviction is that most of our churches today should be multi-cultural churches to reflect the reality of the society in which we live. If we only reflect the “like children play best scenario” how can we ever be regarded a trust worthy and relevant church in our nation? I was so happy to find out about this church and it was a privilege to be with them and to encourage them to continue the way they were going. Hopefully wil they become a source of life to other new church plants in the near future?

My prayer and hope is that more churches will be able to allow themselves to face this kind of challenges and dare to wrestle wit the consequences of being Church today in 2008. Because let’s be honest: the church as we know of today (like-minded, middle class Svensson church) will not survive the next decade unless it quickly adjusts to the reality of society and the Mission of Jesus in our days!

That’s the Way I see it!

John

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