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February 15, 2007



Some great, truly great reflections here.

I just want you to know as another over 30, but still under 40, that I respect the Boomer generation was fighting the first of the culture battles of postmodernity. You not only have battle scars from Vietnam, but from the continuing shift into postmodernity...which is why I think you are so embattled and divided. I think of my generation, GenXers, in many ways as a footnote to your generation. Your parents' generation was the last of the iconic, modern generation. But I see you as the first of the conflicted postmodern, and as such, I feel a deep connection with you guys in ways I can't with the so-called "Greatest Generation." We needed your iconoclasm of that generation to have the space, the forum, and the freedom to build. You may be known for the dubious distiction of being deconstructors, but without it I don't think we'd even be asking the question of "So What?"


Describe these new institutions Monte. Offer some picture of what they would look like. Offer some thoughts on transition. Show us some of your ability to build, not just tear down as you say Boomers have done. I agree with you btw. The problem is, the GI generation developed their great postwar institutions in a time when they could not walk away from society, but we can today. Necessity was the mother of invention for them.

What are the great motivators and values for us today, Boomers, xers and 13rs? These values, will probably be the key to new institutions, agree? If so, what are they, how will they light a fire under us?

I didn't think you had offended anyone, but maybe it will take more of that. I like the mentality of Toyota. If there is a problem on the line, almost anyone has the power to stop and push the "Let's Talk" button. The culture sees the complaint as a gift, not a threat. That is how I see your ministry, a gift, so keep pushing the button. We need to push the button and talk.

Maybe we need a Myspace type place, almost like the old Compuserve forum we had. A way to combine the best of blogging, and forums and community. Something to think about.

Chris Daley

Thank you for reminding me that God loves and appreciates our honesty. This is a foreign concept to the church and so it takes real courage. Thanks also for creating this forum in which we can have robust conversation. For the unorthodox types like myself, I do see this expression of yours as a prayer. It is a lament to God about the deep issues that touch your heart. We have the privilege of peeking over your shoulder just as we peek over the shoulder of David in the Psalms. The issues prayed about here is of deep consequence, so passion is a part of the mix. It's however done within the context of abiding friendship. We love you man! Thanks for being such a stalwart soldier of the cross. You have shaped, enlighten, and inspired multiple generations. You also possess a prophetic voice and prophet are usually at the back of the popularity line during their contemporary years. May your reservoir of strength and service continue to be replenished and your impact for the kingdom increase.


Thank you for the supportive comments!

Let me respond to Marty's challenge to describe the "new institutions" that I mentioned. (And, I promise to write more about this, since there is limited space here.) I can only do this by refering to some specific examples because I firmly believe that the creation of a new ministry or institution is always experimental. I will also warn you that these are all examples in which I have been personally involved to a great deal. There are many other examples which I know of, but in which I am not directly involved.

Here are some examples of what I have in mind: Adventist Metro Ministries (AMM) is an enabling structure that helps to start, spin off and support non-traditional urban ministries, including CityLights (a church plant), Symposia (a community bookstore), Freeze Peach (a cyber cafe) and Faith House (Samir Selmanovic's new mission in NYC). If you want to direct your mission giving to that which all other mission organizations miss -- the urban unchurched -- then AMM provides that channel.

Another example: Center for Creative Ministry is the prototype "resource center" that supports mission with new generations in congregations and community-based ministries in a client-centered model that includes information, research, training, consultants and tools.

Another example: Re-Church Network is a network of friends involved in emergent forms of mission and ministry who come together for sharing, prayer, dialog and mutual support.

Another example: National Innovation Conference, an annual event with networking between events that focuses on supporting innovators and helping people become innnovators.

A set of examples: Community-based local ministries which involve a coalition of churches addressing key needs and issues in their city ... Good Neighbor House in Dayton, Ohio; Adventist Humanitarian Resource Center in Philadelphia; Adventist Community Development Services in Newark; ACS Greater Pittsburgh; ACS Greater Washington; ACS Baltimore.

I am currently writing a more detailed study of this later category and the AMM projects which will be published later this year as "Mission in Metropolis." I will share more here in my blog of some of the overall findings that are "portable," usable by others.


"...It is an overwhelming sense that America and the Church are sitting dead still, caught in a massive traffic jam, with no good solutions, right at the moment when we should be leading a celebration of a future that has arrived."

Enter the 144,000...an eclectic mingling of daring youth (wait till you heard what they have to say!), and of old dreamers that have resurrected THE DREAM...and of prophetic voices like Monte's who pour forth what the living dead can not see.

The Straight Testimony of the True Witness being echoed about in the Adventist Blogosphere? Oh, what a shock to us Conservatives, we thought we alone were sacrosanct enough to give it.

What a cosmic joke! What cosmic justice!

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