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Rational Functionalism

Article posted: 6 Dec 2011

By N. Graham Standish, Alban Weekly, 2011-12-05 Number 384

From the Alban Institute

Many denominations, churches, pastors, and members have become mired in a series of worthless arguments in their attempt to diagnose why mainstream denominations and churches are in decline. Too many in the mainstream church think the problems have to do with theological positions, styles of worship, or availability of programs. So they say that the decline is the result of churches being too liberal or too conservative, or that the decline is due to our too-traditional worship. They say that we don't meet enough of people's needs, and we need to offer more programs.

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Why do we give?

Article posted: 10 Jul 2011

By Craig A. Satterlee, Alban Weekly, 4 July 2011, Number 362

From the Alban Institute

“Why do we give money to the church?” a child asks her mother, who is filling Sunday’s offering envelope. How will the mother answer her daughter’s question? How do we answer this question for our children? How does the preacher answer this question for us? Do we say that we give to help pay the church’s bills? Do we say that we give because of all the good things the church does—teaching children, standing for the best things in the community, fostering happiness and human welfare, providing help and friendship, and caring for people in need? How about answering by reciting a Bible verse or telling a Bible story? What verse would we choose? What story would we tell?

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The Four Pillars of Passionate Spirituality

Article posted: 12 Apr 2011

By Ralph Bowles

Let me set out the preliminaries for this blog on Anglican spirituality.

These reflections are tailored to the presenting current issues of Anglicans in Brisbane Diocese, Anglican Church of Australia - they may be of help to others too, I trust.

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So, You Think You're Friendly?

Article posted: 1 Apr 2011

By Tim Dolan, Congregations, 1 April 2011 Volume 1 2011, Number 1

From the Alban Institute

I teach a diploma course in lay pastoral ministry at Whitworth University. In one of the sessions, I made an off handed comment to my students that I have never come across a congregation that bills itself as the “unfriendly church.”

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Adult Spiritual Formation in the Parish: NCD Insights

Article posted: 23 Sep 2010

By Ralph G. Bowles, NCD Project Officer, PMC

"Discipleship is a lifelong calling to reach our full potential in Jesus Christ." (George Barna)

The healthy growth of a church is very dependent on the spirituality of its members – specifically on the balanced quality and the enthusiasm of the members for their faith. Natural Church Development research has identified a range of factors that contribute to the kind of spirituality that is correlated to growth potential of churches, as well as delivering high levels of satisfaction and inspiration.

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