From Performative to Formative Ministry

April 4, 2023

In many congregations today, there is a basic social contract that goes something like this: clergy and staff (the “ministers”) are expected to perform Christian faith for congregation members, and congregation members are primarily expected to express their discipleship by supporting the institutional church. Clergy and staff are the ones expected to read the Bible, pray, evangelize, and perform public witness. Congregation members are expected to donate, volunteer, and show up at church activities and programs. 

To ask regular church members (what we at Faith+Lead call “everyday disciples”) to pray aloud, interpret scripture, talk about their own spiritual lives, or share their faith is uncomfortable because little in their experience of church has formed them to do these things. They are happy to defer to the professionals and experts because they have been conditioned to do so, often over a lifetime of church attendance. Their experience of church has not been oriented around equipping them to embody Christian discipleship and witness in daily life. 

Read the full post on Faith+Lead at this link.

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