Missio Alliance is the brainchild of the Ecclesia Network. It is a much needed effort to provide a theological framework for how to be the church in a 21st Century, Post-Christendom America. It features a few speakers who have radically shaped who I am and how I think, most prevalently, Dallas Willard and Scot McKnight. Other participants include my church’s own Gideon Tsang and one of my incredible Fuller MAGL professors Shelley Trebesch. Beside’s world-class content, here are the other two reasons I can’t wait:
A Gathering of the Other Voices
Missio is not the first attempt to rethink the church for the 21st century. However, previous attempts seem to have shifted their energies to focusing on postmodern deconstructionism, or reinvigorating reformed theology. Missio bills itself as a gathering of Practitioners, Theologians and Missologists who are
“Exploring the shape of a missional encounter with this new context calls for asking fresh questions and engaging in dialogue about topics as fundamental as the gospel, humanity, Scripture, the Holy Spirit, and the Kingdom of God; all framed around the role of the Church in relationship to God’s mission in the world.”
It is a promise that the perspective of those of us who follow Christ but don’t fit into the boxes provided by the style of faith seen in American will be heard.
Relationships are Key
Knowing that the event is an outgrowth of the Ecclesia Network, you can expect a heavy focus on relationships. The speakers are important, but I am much more excited for the time to share your war stories while sipping on quality beverages.
When someone asked me why I pay money to hang out at events like this, I broke it down this way: I spend my work life with secular people who don’t understand my faith. I do a lot of multi-denominational work, supporting people I love, but often don’t agree with. I love doing these things, because they are my mission. But Ecclesia gatherings are a chance to just hang out with people who love Jesus and are as crazy as I am. That’s rare, and worth flying across the country to enjoy.