Hello folks - as usual I'm sporadic in my posting but with this post I can reveal to you one factor in my sporadic blogging over the past few months (this doesn't explain my sporadic blogging before that, but hey, I've never met an excuse I didn't like). I've been a bit busy with the following things.
This past Monday, the congregation of the church I pastor, Glen Burnie Evangelical Presbyterian Church, voted to sell our current facility and move to another. There are numerous reasons for this which I won't get into here, as most of the reasons are family matters. However, I can tell you the basics - we are a much smaller congregation than we were when we bought our facility, and we have an older facility needing some major repairs. So, the current facility has become too much of a financial burden.
The good news is that this has awakened us from our slumber and we are not only planning to relocate but to recast the vision as a missional church. And with that, over the next few months I hope to devote most of my blogging to church revitalization issues. And I blog this now to say that you can be of help in a few ways.
1. I am interested in interacting with people who have been a part of a church replant - where a plateaued or dying church found new life. If anyone has any stories they can share of such things I would love to read them.
2. Similarly, I would be interested in reading the stories of older, established churches that have successfully made the turn to a more missional focus.
3. One person told me that seminary trains you to take a plateaued church and keep it on a plateau. It doesn't really prepare you to be a church planter. But to take things a step further, the pastor of a replant or "turnaround church" needs to have the qualifications of a church planter and then some. Does anyone have any stories of regular ol' church leaders like me who were able to shift gears and do what is necessary to lead a replant or turnaround church?
4. If anyone reading this lives in northern Anne Arundel County, MD, or if you know of someone who does, would you be interested in joining us on this journey or referring someone to us? Anne Arundel County is just below Baltimore and is in the nation's 4th largest marketplace, between Baltimore and Washington DC. In the next 4 years our county is expected to receive its largest influx of new residents since WWII, due to the Army's base realignment. Over 5700 jobs are coming to our area, along with many other service jobs and so we are hoping to be in place to minister to these folks. So this would be a great place for people with a missional mindset to come and help recast a church in a missional mold.
5. Finally, we are going to put together an e-mail prayer update. If you would like to receive those updates please let me know in the comments and I'll add you to our list. Be sure to remember that when you sign in to comment you give your e-mail address so don't put your e-mail address in the body of your comment, unless you want the rest of the world to see it and give your address to the spammers. I'll just collect your e-mail address myself.