Churches, Cultures & Leadership


Haah Video: Theology of Discomfort

Stepping outside of our comfort zone is key for developing multicultural relationships and churches.  Pastor Kevin Haah explains that culture is not a zero sum game. When we embrace other cultures, our own identity is enhanced. We are created to adopt and be flexible, but we easily give into the preferences and biases that challenge this shaping of intercultural life. → On p 12 Branson and Martínez write, “The scriptural narratives are loaded with references to the strangeness of strangers and the discomforts of participating in God’s love for the world. This book is about that strangeness, those discomforts.” Pushing through our own awkwardness or uncertainty enables us to cross borders as the Spirit guides us in peace and love.  The differences that shape discomforts are described through the middle chapters of the book – concerning differences in how we embody our worldviews, self-understandings, approaches to relationships, and even the ways we think (ch. 4-8). Branson describes how the interpretive role of leadership is vital as a leader helps reshape meanings during this process in a church (pp 213ff). Further, relational leadership is needed for us to move beyond our usual habits (pp 218ff). In chapter 10, Martínez provides a set of practices that can shape us for these changes. The Bible study on Jeremiah can help a group discuss these challenges (p 35). This is the 5th clip from my interview with Kevin.

Posted in: Part II: Sociocultural Perspectives, Part III: Leadership, Communication and Change, Videos
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By engaging ethnic histories and hearing personal autobiographies we are participating in God's creative work of shaping and reshaping church life and mission.

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Part I: Theology and Context

Using the frameworks of practical theology and missional ecclesiology, we provide an introduction to the work of leadership and to social theory, including matters of social contexts, cultural variables, and ethnic identity.

Part II: Sociocultural Perspectives

Cultural anthropology provides insights into social power and human dynamics that vary among cultures. Topics include worldviews, relationships, identity, language, and perception and thinking.

Part III: Leadership, Communication and Change

We need to develop the skills and capacities for communication and leadership in intercultural settings in order to engage the challenges of church life and mission in multicultural contexts.


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