Kenn Kilah : Caloundra CityHarvest
I have resisted
telling our story for some time now as I feel, along with many others,
that it's too early to come to any conclusions about the emerging church.
I have pastored Baptist
churches for over 35 years and have always tried to stay on the 'cutting
edge' in terms of evangelism and church growth. Having tried all the 'new'
ideas from Yonggi Cho to Wagner to Hybels and even Warren. I have been
to all those places and studied hard. I have experienced a mini-revival
in the last Baptist church I pastored have been to Pensacola and Toronto.
So, you could say I have some experience.
I resigned from the
last church at the end of 2000 and went on long service leave only to
be confronted by the Lord in a dream which resulted in starting a new
church from scratch with just 12 people.
We are now four years
into it and some understandings have emerged. I must say that, having
read most of the postings on your site and others, that there is not going
to be a neat box for the emerging missional church to fit. Here is an
overview of what the Lord has led us into:
We have tried to be
not too radical but to actually take some old Biblical principles and
tease them out and try to be relevant.
- "Every member
a minister" - Less emphasis on "the Pastor" and more on every one ministering
where God has placed. Discovering what Gifts and abilities each one
has and then putting that to work in the community or at work or school.
It doesn't sound too much different from the 'sounds' we have made in
the past. However what we are trying to do is to make that work.
Now we have six different groups with leaders(who independently set
themselves up) connecting with neighbours, at work in a shed on a farm
- "We don't GO to
church anymore" - Sure we meet on Sundays at 10am. Because that suits
most people. We regard this meeting as the church's sitting room. It
is two to two and a half hours of worship, coffee and teaching.
We meet at local Club and sometimes have lunch together in the Bistro.
We have met in the past in a Resort conference room. We have no intention
of developing property and hope to develop more meeting rooms rather
than a huge congregation in one place.
In the future(maybe) we will meet all together for a convention which
will be for building one another and sharing stories to inspire people.
Our mission statement is very simple - His presence; Touching people;
Changing lives. I could already share stories of how this is happening.
- "There no
events calender" We do not invite anybody to anything as a corporate
body. However people do invite others to their homes and small groups.
We do meet with people for coffee etc. etc.
- "Keep it simple"
There is a small leadership group, I am regarded as the leader and we
do believe in all Apostolic gifts being exercised, but not necessarily
in 'Church' meetings alone. People are free to baptise new believers
and hold communion at their groups without me, and are free to pursue
We believe in releasing and empowering people.
empowers ministry" We have spent a lot of time getting to know
one another. That is why we encourage smaller groups spending time together.
We believe that out of relationship we can then trust people to minister
God's Grace into peoples lives.
- "We are not
the only church in town" Therefore we believe in supporting other
churches and their ministries. If someone has an annual event that is
doing a good job we support it by helping with personnel or by giving
a cash donation.
We have a wide vision of church both in the City the nation and other
nations. So, we have quite a support list at home and overseas.
- "Our leaders,
including me, work at secular jobs as well as leading the church."
This has developed
into a much longer treatise than I set out to do. So I will stop here.
As you can see from the above we are concentrating on mission rather than
in house stuff. Hope this is helpful in adding the picture.
Kenn Kilah Caloundra
exists to share stories, thoughts, ideas and other tasty things
from the emerging church - and we want yours!
your story to us: