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God's Square Dance

A better model for caring congregations.

(Editor's note: Christian author, speaker, and therapist Larry Crabb is featured in the Summer 2004 issue of Leadership. "I think the missing element in most pastors' lives is community," Crabb told us in this interview. We talked with Crabb about his high expectations for the church and a better model for caring congregations. Here are some highlights from the full-length print edition, plus some answers we couldn't squeeze into the magazine.)

Your model of community depends heavily on a congregation that appreciates open, caring interaction, where people "have the integrity to come clean." Can this be taught?

It starts with a recognition of impoverished theology. Eugene Peterson was scheduled to appear at a conference on spiritual formation. I phoned him to ask what he would speak on.

"Our Trinitarian theology in the evangelical church is thin," he said.

Until it gets thicker, we're not going to make much progress in this whole area of spiritual ...

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