In this excerpt from the introduction to their new book, Tim Shapiro and Kara Faris say that congregations aren’t going away, and neither is congregating. Creative, alternative faith communities are finding new ways to connect to the Divine.
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Across the country, creative, alternative congregations are doing church in unconventional ways, the co-author of ‘Divergent Church’ says in this interview. They may look different, but they are deeply rooted in tried-and-true practices of the faith.
The Walking Woman is a symbol of "emboldened women striding into the future with faith, courage and conviction," according to the college's website. Photo courtesy of College of St. Mary
College of St. Mary, a once-struggling Catholic women’s college, has found new life by refocusing on its mission, translating it to today and finding new niches of women to serve -- single moms, immigrants and others -- says the school president.
Children in the WINGS for Kids afterschool program display their latest art project: butterflies.
Photos courtesy of WINGS for Kids
WINGS invests deeply in its staff with rigorous screening, intensive training and ongoing coaching. This culture of leadership has been critical to its success.
Kuhnekt Initiative participants Octavia Ramsey, standing, and Carolyn Cooper, right, have a conversation at a community meal held at The Grove Presbyterian Church. Photos by Jason E. Miczek
Church members at The Grove Presbyterian Church are randomly paired and commit to monthly meetings as a way to deepen connections between them.
The chancel of Richfield UMC, where the remaining members have decided to close after years of faithful ministry. Photos courtesy of Zina Risley
A creative new ministry is underway in various UMC conferences to help declining congregations chart their end and leave behind a lasting gift.
Amazon’s acquisition of Whole Foods illustrates that innovation isn’t always about starting over but about understanding where and how a community gathers, writes the minister of education at The Riverside Church.
The church needs both those who are loyal to existing religious institutions and those eager to usher in what the church will look like next, writes the managing director of grants at Leadership Education at Duke Divinity.
Both innovation and design thinking must be set within a broader context, one that focuses on our purpose and ends, writes the theologian.
At Una Familia, mothers and volunteers work with children in a summer tutoring program on Virginia's Eastern Shore. Leaders of Una Familia took part in the Ministry Accelerator workshops to help them expand the size and impact of their ministry. Photos by David B. Hollingsworth
Virginia United Methodists are helping established ministries expand by teaching them new skills in a two-day “accelerator” program.
Leadership Education at Duke Divinity teaches a way of thinking that holds the past and future in tension, not in opposition.
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