NEW YORK — A former New Yorker who says he grew up knowing how to "play church...really, really well," has uprooted himself and his family from Georgia and moved back to the once dreaded borough of Brooklyn to develop a church plant targeting New York City's disaffected and disillusioned young people who, according to recent Pew studies, consider themselves religious or spiritual, but want nothing to do with church.
"I'm a preacher's kid. I was raised in church, I've done the church thing. I know how to play church, and I know how to play it really, really well because I did it my whole life before college. I don't want to create anything near that. I want people to be who they are. I want them to accept the radical power of the Gospel and allow their lives to be transformed," said James T. Roberson, pastor of The Bridge Church, a fledgling faith community centered in Downtown Brooklyn's trendy Park Slope neighborhood.
Roberson's experience includes helping to found a campus ministry while in college and serving at four church plants in the South, his most recent stint being the missional communities pastor at Blueprint Church in Atlanta, Ga. In February, after "the Lord began to make His call on our lives a tangible reality," Roberson, his wife and their two children found themselves in the "borough of churches" — one of Brooklyn's nicknames due to the number of churches that call the NYC district home. more >>
A Presbyterian Church (USA) special committee has recommended that the denomination look to add more racial and ethnic diversity to its process for clerical ordination.
The PC (USA) General Assembly special committee filed its interim report late last month and included recommendations for the "Standard Ordination Examinations" clergy candidates undergo.
"That presbyteries be encouraged to broaden the pool of readers of the exams to be more representative of the diversity of the PC (USA) and to include more representation from racial/ethnic persons," recommends the report. more >>
LONG BEACH, Calif. – Kicking off the first plenary session at the Mosaix 2013 Multi-Ethnic Church Conference on Tuesday, Pastors Mark DeYmaz, Derwin Gray and Eugene Cho, and theology professor Paul Louis Metzger shared their belief in this movement that aims to reflect God's love for all people and the diversity of the kingdom of heaven by planting and growing economically and ethnically-diverse churches.
DeYmaz, who planted Mosaic Church in Little Rock, Ark., where he's the directional leader, noted that among all of the churches in the United States, 86.3 percent fail to have at least 20 percent diversity in their congregations, adding that churches are 10 times more segregated than the communities in which they sit and 20 times more segregated than nearby public schools.
"Surely it breaks the heart of God that so many churches throughout this country are segregated ethnically and economically from one another," DeYmaz commented, "and little has changed in more than 100 years since it was first heard that Sunday morning is the most-segregated hour of the week." more >>
More than 900 church leaders and planters will be in Long Beach, Calif., this week to attend the Mosaix 2013 Multi-Ethnic Church Conference to equip themselves with the tools they need to build congregations that reflect the ethnic and socioeconomic diversity of the communities they serve.
At this year's conference, church planters will hear from 68 speakers who'll be leading workshops and discussing issues pertaining to 15 tracks that include topics on community engagement, overcoming the racial divide and engaging Hispanics and Latinos, among others, with each track being translated into Spanish and French.
The theme of this year's conference is "For the Sake of the Gospel" to reflect that the multi-ethnic church movement is exegetically sound and rooted in New Testament theology. more >>
Pastor John MacArthur's newest book, Strange Fire: The Danger of Offending the Holy Spirit With Counterfeit Worship, scheduled for release next month, will most likely do little to douse any of the controversy unleashed during his criticism of the Charismatic Movement at his recent conference of the same name.
The Christian Post received an advance copy of the book, and passages and quotes from it can be read below.
MacArthur argued at the Strange Fire Conference held at Grace Community Church in Sun Valley, Calif. on Oct. 16-18 that Pentecostal-influenced preachers like Bishop T.D. Jakes and Joel Osteen are advancing a prosperity gospel that is "spirit-centered" when it should be Christ-centered, as well as other controversial remarks. more >>
A historic Florida megachurch first planted in the 1950s is experiencing major decline in its attendance numbers and the first negative impact came from a moral indiscretion by a lead pastor no longer there, a spokesperson for the church said.
However, there are multiple reasons for the sharp decline in worship attendance, which threatens the congregation's ability to afford to use their current worship building, Dr. Bob Rhoden, Orlando-area Calvary Assembly's interim pastor, told The Christian Post. more >>