Thinking Outside the Circle

Lyndsay Jacobs, Christian Churches NZ/Associated Churches of Christ in NZ, Uniting Congregations Partner Representative, in "The Wider Church – Number 7, July 2007 (Occasional news and updates prepared for Uniting Congregations in Aotearoa New Zealand with Christian Churches/Churches of Christ participation)" writes:

I am very encouraged by the way many union/cooperative churches are responding to their call to ministry and witness in this new century. But being effective parishes/congregations in this post modern, post denominational, post Christian, post Christendom era is a huge and constant challenge to us all.

IT IS A NEW WORLD. Like many others, I feel absolutely sure that trying to do what we’ve always done, but doing it better, JUST WON’T WORK. That is like looking through the wrong end of the telescope or trying to get ice cream into the cone through the bottom. It’s coming at things from the wrong end. That’s thinking ‘Inside the Circle’ – looking out from where we are. THE WORLD HAS CHANGED. We’re not where we were anymore.

The first (and major, huge) step for any congregation wanting to be real in 21st Century New Zealand, is to understand today’s community and HOW THE COMMUNITY SEES CHRISTIANITY and the CHURCH. We need to step outside our circles, see ourselves (our congregations) from the outside looking in. We need to think outside the circle.

I have prepared a one day or two evening discovery/action program for congregations which feel they’re ready, like Abraham, to explore moving into a ‘new country’. Let me know if you’re game. ( Contact info: lyndsaylorrainejacobs at, PO Box 211, Kirwee 7543, New Zealand. Ph: +64 (0) 3 317-8011. Mobile: +64 021 424516 ),