Mike Kinman at “Epiphany Series” Feb 21 2018
“Capitalism is the dominant religion in America”. For churches and other organizations fixed costs go up, staffs shrink, and work loads expand to keep “production” at the same level. Looks a lot like enslavement. Require church staff to observe a “sabbath”. Begin meetings w 2 minutes of silence.
Richard Rohr: 4 evolutionary stages of organizations
Man-a visionary who draws others
Movement-inspires intense energy and commitment
Machine-institutionalized supports intended to maintain the movement
Monument-energy shifts to maintaining the machine
Added “M”- Mausoleum- the edifice is all that remains of the Movement
Examples of “returning to the Movement” - “Do we believe in a God who is continually breaking into history?”-
Thistle Farms- “a combination of Benedictine norms and 12 Step spirituality”
Black Lives Matter- “I met Jesus there...”
Signs- “I wept more. I laughed more. I was more confused. I struggled more.”
The institutional church can discourage “movement” thinking because we are accountable to people w deep roots in the Machine.
Think of “church” as more than the institution... “The Beloved Community” does not reject the Machine...ideas of Josiah Royce, and WEB DuBois developed by Howard Thurmond and MLK in a theological direction...”the highest and common good... which calls forth an unshakable confidence because it is God who will ultimately accomplish it.” Trap of progressives in general: no theology/spirituality to sustain it.
Resistance from the Machine
Be sympathetic: you have been to “Ghana” while they stayed home in the Machine.
Use theology: creation...”you are made good/ in the image of God. Often “in disguise” (Hays Rockwell) nothing can deprive you of your essential goodness. Whites often react with shame. Adam and Eve were “naked and unashamed”. At The Fall they didn’t so much become bad as they did become ashamed.
Guilt= “I did something bad”
Shame= “I am bad.” (Brene Brown)
No need. To wallow in guilt because of whiteness or work in a corrupt system. Trust your beloved ness. (Me-I am an idiot. But a beloved idiot.)
In Egypt the people forgot their belovedness. Exodus 3:7-8 “The Lord said “I have observed...”. What do we observe...?
Theology...creation/image of God/liberation from slavery/incarnation
In Ferguson interfaith Group did not “lead” or even attempt to “influence”. Took off clerical garb and went out “to meet Jesus”.
Question ourselves: how are we Monuments? How are we Mausoleums? Cultivate courage to challenge our dependence on the Machine. Build a network of support...that’s what “keeps you off the streets”. To decline to do what you believe Jesus is calling you to do is soul killing.
“Despoil the Egyptians”. The Machine provides “cover” (my words). Outside users of church property are not “guests” they are part of the mission. The church is not our possession. Reduce “us/them” and create just “us”.
In a Theology of Abundance power is not in limited supply. In the Eucharistic model the power of Christ is limitless. Everyone contributes to the holy mess and everyone receives back a piece of everybody else transformed.
It’s ok when people opt out. Continue in relationship/prayer. Reconciliation does not mean “they change and agree with me.” We are all transformed.
Faith= “ voluntarily show up and do something incredibly difficult in the hope of transformation.”
Church responds well to crises but not when it becomes chronic. (Me: the crises becomes chronic...all of ministry and theology tries to translate the chronic into the crises. “Christ has died. Christ is risen. Christ will come again”= “Christ is a crises. Christ is chronic. Now what?” Don’t blame Mike Kinman for that one. It’s mine, and a work in progress/dumb idea?
Stop defining The Church by avg. Sunday attendance! Church is the Movement, which needs “freedom fighters” not “allies”.
Radical Reconciliation- book by Allan Boesak and Curtiss DeYoung ...reconciliation not being “nice” not an agreement to overlook difference. Means exchange places with the other. Establish commonality and solidarity with the other. Overcome alienation and replaces with identification. All are transformed.
We come to see the other’s dead children as our own. Feel it. Let the oppressed define what solidarity looks like. Radical welcome=your life is bound up in mine. “Recognize each new person changes us for the better.”
In church life “lift expectations/provide resources/accountability. “Everybody is struggling with something; everybody is beloved”...creates a bond.
“Create a space to receive belovedness”