Wednesday, June 4, 2008

This Isn’t Working Out

My attempts to reform my diction to a more popular “winsome” form so far have been a limited failure. I thought everyone would love “trendy contemporary terminology,” or “trendy contemporary bureaucratic terminology,” but so far, it’s had limited appeal. Maybe Lutherans just aren’t “mission minded” enough. Here are some of the comments I’ve received with less-than-subtle hints regarding my efforts:

You can say what I wish I could say, so please go back to your usual speak.

The best feature of your posts was (is) the lack of "trendy contemporary terminology ."

Better stick with your old, honest self, Scott!:-)

...I don't think you'll ever "make it" in the contemporary Lutheran bureaucratic world, thanks be to God...

"I've searched all the parks in all the cities and found no statues of committees."
- G.K. Chesterton

You're not gonna get a statue if you keep this up.
Are you starting to see a trend? I don’t give up easily though. Must be the German in me. Most people call this behavior “stubborn.” I prefer to think of it as “tenacious” or “dauntless.” So I’m going to give it one more shot. If this doesn’t work, I guess it’ll be back to the original, rather dull, “me.” So here goes:

Terms You Must Use - Emergent Style

Here’s the list of trendy contemporary Emerging Church terms, followed by my first effort at incorporating them in a meaningful way. Please add any Emergent terms you can think of in the comments section. Also, you might consider voting on whether you prefer the “new” me or the “old” me. I’m a little conflicted at this point. Any comments will be greatly appreciated.

God’s future
Institutional Church
Sacred space

Dear Reader,

I really need to get back to a more ancient form of worship, something more experiential and authentic. I need to be more intentional, imagining a more inclusive and irenic Church in a spirit of love, a metanarrative that encompasses a more missional stance, and that incarnates God’s future and His kingdom in the present, recapturing the sacred space the institutional Church has forgotten. What do you think?


Pastor Wolfmueller said...

You've moved beyond your foundationalist modernism and embraced the post-rationalistic convergance of a holistic and organic theological matrix. You've apparently experienced the primitive story of the Bible in the community of imaginative ritualisation, and are now ready to join the discussion in a post-modern, post Christian cultural context.

Red said...

That language disturbs me more than the bureaucratese I hear so often.

And your old self is not dull... it's straight-forward and completely understandable; just as it should be. Those with the fancy insider terms are using them to cover up the fact that what they have to say is simply full of fluff and not substance.

As some other German from long ago would put it in straight-forward terms: "This is most certainly true"

Phil Magness said...

Good stuff, I just wouldn't cede to the Emergent crowd the word "authentic", though. There have been many of us in the confessional 'movement' these past 20 years who have used that word to describe liturgical worship that is traditional yet not traditionalist, i.e. that incorporates the contribution of liturgical musicians and artists who are living along with the rich heritage received by a given communion.

Sometimes we do lose words to the culture - but I wouldn't cede this one just yet. Indeed, as a musician I'm still holding on to the word "creative" even as I have to take care with its use.

Excellent blog, btw!