Saturday, March 2, 2013

Saturday Good Reads: The Church

Last Sunday I posted about the church, and a conversation started by Marcus Goodyear over at Good Word Editing, The Uncertain Future of Traditional Faith Communities.

The church, and the future of the church, has been much on my mind. It’s not that I have the answers to the problems plaguing the church, and especially the American church. But I’m seeing more and more people beginning to raise the questions, and raise them seriously.

These are four blogs I read on a regular basis that raise and discuss questions about the church. I follow more; these are only four examples.

Slow Church. Chris Smith is the editor of The Englewood Review of Books. He writes this blog for Patheos with John Pattison, deputy editor of the Burnside Writers Collective. I don’t agree with everything they write, but that’s not the point. The point is to gain an understanding of the whole conversation that’s beginning to happen, and Slow Church is a vital part of that.

Internet Monk. Internet Monk was started by Michael Spencer, and he wrote for it for years until his death from cancer. Now it’s led by Chaplain Mike and Jeff Dunn, with occasional other writers (Like Martha of Ireland). The posts are consistently good and always provocative.

Informing the Reformed. This blog by Canadian pastor Tim Challies is widely read. Tim in unapologetically reformed (well, so am I, for that matter). He shares books, opinions, thoughts, theology, and always well-written posts.

Canterbury Tales: Dr. Taylor Marshall is Roman Catholic. His blog is about questions and issues of concern for Roman Catholics. But much of what he says applies to the larger church (I’m referring to the “church universal” here).

This Monday, The High Calling is beginning a new weekly discussion on David Platt’s Follow Me. Two years ago, I reviewed Platt’s Radical for PRISM Magazine; unfortunately, the review is not available (for free) online. But it was good.  I’ve read the first three chapters of Follow Me (and the introduction by Francis Chan) and I think it is exactly the kind of book I need to be reading to understand these questions about the church. And myself.

So please visit The High Calling on Monday and see what the discussion is about, and perhaps read the book and join in.

Photograph by Petr Kratochvil via Public Domain Pictures. Used with permission.


Maureen said...

The Washington Post has a good religion columnist. Today, she wrote about the Catholic Church, more specifically why American Catholics, who don't adhere much the directions coming from Rome, do not consider themselves Protestants. She also made the point that the Church is not its leaders but the people who comprise it, and that in the case of American Catholics, the members could not imagine being other than Catholic.

Fatha Frank said...

There are a lot of such conversations going on right now and I have no doubt that the Holy Spirit is at work.
Thanks for the additional resources, Glynn. I know iMonk and Challies, but haven't heard of the others. I also read Frank Viola (both at Patheos and his own blog) who has a lot to say on this subject as well.

I'm very interested in the discussion at the High Calling and I'll be following it closely. Unfortunately I can't add another book to my ever-growing list.