First Third Conversations

How Do We Get Young Adults to Come to Church?

Aaron Fuller - wrestling coach and pastorHere's the next awesome feature in our series of MA thesis posts. This one, by Aaron Fuller asks the question if the problem with twenty-somethings and the church has to do with the structure of leadership.  And yes, that really IS Aaron in the picture. 

How do we get young adults to come to church?  That’s the question that drives most churches these days.  However, they understand that to mean, “what types of ministry will draw them in?”  Those are not

Read More »
Comments (0)

Being Church Beyond Our Walls

Did you read Amanda Nelson's thesis yet? If not, it is posted at the bottom of the previous post.

I want to commend Amanda on her work in digging into what the church needs to learn about the spiritual lives on young adults. Her stories of young adults are similar to so many stories of young people in our contexts. I agree with many of her ideas on what the church can learn and want to add some more thoughts on what can be done to reach young people who have so many gifts to offer the church.

One

Read More »
Comments (0)

What's the point, anyway?

We have spent almost two months offering various perspectives on mission and service, but at the end of the day...What's the point?

I love Chicago, and a few weeks ago I has in Chicago for a meeting. Taking the train into the city and walking the streets is exciting, at least for me. As an experienced traveler, I can navigate things pretty well. But one aspect of my trip left me uneasy. Here's what happened.

Walking with a colleague to dinner one night, a mother with two elementary age kids came

Read More »
Comments (0)

Preparation, Action, Reflection and Celebration = Transformation!

 

Trinity Lutheran College is continuing its study on what makes service projects and mission trips transformational. It’s all part of the SALLT (Service And Learning Leadership Team) program. What they have found is so vital that they have even developed and APP to help leaders through this process. Check it out at www.sallt.org/store.

 This information was so vital that we structured the Practice Justice day at the last Lutheran National Youth Gathering all around this four-step

Read More »
Comments (0)

Open your eyes to the community around you

By Eric Elton, Mission Outreach Director at Prince of Peace Church in Burnsville, MN

Ah yes … the mission trip.  As many of us know, on these trips, God often takes us to a new mountaintop place.  A place we may have never been before spiritually.  We return home … we are fired up ... we are going to trust that the fire will continue … until Monday morning, when we start checking emails and voicemails.  “I will get back to that flame on Wednesday. “

Read More »
Comments (0)

Reflections on a Mission Trip

By Pastor Nancy Lee Gauche

It has been a rich dialogue on mission over the past month. As I reflect on this trip, I will bracket some key practices that shape my understanding around outreach and short-term mission to add to the conversation.  Enjoy!

Not too long ago I led a Women’s Mission Trip to the Dominican Republic. http://doulosdiscovery.org/    [Know your audience, this women’s trip is different from intergenerational trips I’ve led]   My goal

Read More »
Comments (0)

Love God, Help Others, Jesus Loves You, repeat

By Julie Hagen

I am 29 weeks into my Church School calendar (only 4 more weeks but who is counting) and have a rotation of  the above themes over and over and over again. Please know I’m NOT sick of teaching kids to help others.  That will never get old!  I think we can dig deeper. In all of our discussion on mission trips over the last few months, I’m encouraged by how we can help children think beyond just ‘help others’. How can we teach them to discover

Read More »
Comments (0)

Resources on Reclaiming the Servant's Heart for Mission

Want to dig deeper in the First Third conversation on mission?

Webinar: Inculturating the Gospel; Dr. Colleen Windham Hughes

 

A webinar from the Practice Discipleship Initiative by Dr. Colleen Windham Hughes, or California Lutheran University.

 

Serving with Eyes Wide Open: Doing Short-Term Missions with Cultural Intelligence by David A. Livermore (Apr 1, 2006)

Serving with Eyes Wide Open helps Christians understand the changing face of Christianity and how that affects short-term

Read More »
Comments (0)

The Gospel without Gunpowder

By Jake Sorenson

Last week, I had the privilege of traveling to Tokyo, Japan with my wife. Besides celebrating our 10th anniversary, the occasion for our trip was my college roommate’s marriage to a wonderful Japanese girl. My roommate traveled to Japan in 2005 with the Young Adults in Global Mission program of the ELCA. I expected him to return to the good old USA in a year or two, but he decided to stay in Tokyo to teach English. After a while, I figured it had to be about a girl, so I was

Read More »
Comments (0)

Turn off your cell phones and commit to this space

by Colleen Windham-Hughes, Assistant Professor Assistant Professor in Religion; Director, Theology and Christian Leadership Program; Associate Director, Center for Equality and Justice at California Lutheran University

When I think of culture I like to keep yogurt in mind. For yogurt and for people culture means conditions that foster life and growth. Now, this certainly does not mean that all of culture is life-giving, but it does mean that people are aiming what helps them live and grow and

Read More »
Comments (0)