Growing Edge Book Review: Not What I Do

The pastor of a postmodern ministry makes the case against cloning his church.

It was dark. Not complete darkness, but certainly darker than any worship space I had experienced. The music sounded more earthy Miles Davis than uplifting Amy Grant. The space had been an urban storefront. To my surprise, instead of gutting and remodeling this space, the church that worshiped here seemed satisfied gutting it, leaving walls unpainted and pipes exposed. This was my first visit to Spirit Garage in Minneapolis.

Once I noticed that the oldest person there might have been the pastor who was in her thirties, my ministry instincts kicked in. I created a list: "How to reach twenty-somethings."

  1. Low lighting.

  2. Dingy feel.

  3. Dark music.

  4. Tight quarters.

I soon pictured a clone of Spirit Garage happening elsewhere under my leadership. "If this worked for them," I thought, "I could make it work somewhere else."

In The Emerging Church (Zondervan, 2003), the pastor of a postmodern ministry in Santa Cruz, Cali- fornia, critiques this kind of church cloning. Dan Kimball claims a church that clones ...

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