Like that old, soulful U2 rock anthem, do you sometimes find yourself singing "I still haven't found what I'm looking for," and somehow the song's sentiment connects with your spiritual journey? Perhaps you feel emotionally distant from the Christian spirituality and Sunday worship you grew up with. Curious to find out why you’re having these feelings/thoughts/disconnect? But more importantly, curious if there is a better way to think about, experiment with, and practice faith in the 21st Century?
The roots of this disconnect between what we are and what we grew up with are many: generational, philosophical (postmodernity, for example), educational (if you grew up in an anti-intellectual church), and cultural. Someone recently observed, “We are in the midst of a paradigm shift in the church. Not since the Reformation five centuries ago have so many Christians come together to ask whether the church is in sync with their deepest beliefs and commitments.”
“An Emerging Christianity Conversation in DC” will take up & explore these and other theological/cultural questions. The possibilities for exploration are actually exciting once you start being creative and think "outside the box!" We are united by a love of asking questions, drinking beer, and reading Emerging Christianity-type books. We have author talks at pubs, book discussions, a justice group, meditation sessions, labyrinth walks and more. On our part, we are a multicultural, multi-creedal, and global Christian-type of group. We come from many continents and traditions. But most importantly, we are the type of group that does something as crazy as drawing from the major streams of the Christian family (Protestant, Roman Catholic, Eastern Orthodox, black church tradition, progressive, "born-again," etc.) and try to learn from our differences and experiences.
Why We Love Brian McLaren's books: The Emerging Christianity movement in general is proposing some fascinating, challenging ideas, perspectives, and solutions. Emerging Christian theorist/philosopher, justice activist, and progressive minister Brian McLaren kicked-off the first group meeting in December 2010 at Busboys & Poets. He recently wrote A New Kind of Christianity: 10 Questions that are Transforming the Faith (2010). Brian returned again in June, 2011 when he spoke on "Spiritual Practices for Today's 'Not Religious.'"
We love discussing Brian's books because they explore the hopeful possibilities inherent in Christian life & spirituality; what this coming spirituality might look like, and how this “emerging spirituality” is challenging as well as reinvigorating conventional understandings of the Bible, spiritual practices, justice advocacy, God, Jesus' teaching, and Christian community. So if you are interested in exploring what may be a hopeful future for the Christian faith--join us! We are going to try to discuss and put these ideas in practice.
Related opportunities: The organizer of "An Emerging Christianity Conversation in DC" also runs DC Theology Pub another meetup.com group that also sponsors theological discussions. The difference between the two is that DC Theology Pub sponsors a broader, and more eclectic, mix of speakers and books for folks interested in Christian Theology. You might want to join the DC Theology Pub meetup if you find you are not interested in the particular animating themes of Emerging Christianity but are still interested in hearing book authors talking about their new books on theology. Finally, if you are in NOVA and can't make DC events, you might want to try the Arlington Theology Pub (click here) for similar discussions in Virginia.
For more information: Click on the"Learn more about this Meetup Group (click here)" link below for more detailed information on this group, the 10 questions McLaren has identified as central to the future of Christianity, the books we'll be looking reading, and the organizer. These pages will help you see if you are asking the same questions that the Emerging Christianity movement is seeking to answer! Feel free to come to one or all of our speaker events and book discussions!