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Uneasy Rider? The Challenge to a Ministry of Word and Sacrament in a Post-Christendom Missional Climate by Mark Johnston 7/2/12

This was given as the Knox Centre for Ministry and Leadership Inaugural Lecture 2012

This is a demanding read which yields much to those willing to search, discuss and ponder.  Mark notes that previous ‘fixes’ to arrest numeric decline of (Presbyterian) churches have not worked long term.  His view is that we are blinkered by our imaginations (essentially how we see the world) and this has disabled church leaders and members by:

–          The way the church is organised – often with the presbyter as the ‘CEO’

–          Denominational structures which limited (controlled) imagination and practices in a rapidly changing environment and resulted in new churches outside the established denominations

–          Disembodied spirituality – the rise of the individual which didn’t need the church as an anchor.  A separation of faith based values from ‘real life’ issues.

Mark then goes onto to suggest some pathways which might be explored by leaders to make the church fit and able to meet the requirements of the present.