It might seem obvious as to why post-pandemic church is the subject of our conference this year. We are the church, and we are (hopefully!) going into a post-pandemic stage. We aren't saying that we think Covid-19 will be gone for good, and we actually think that some of these new regulations are here to stay. We are saying that the feelings of fear, incapacitation, and confusion are ending, as we adjust to the new world and try to build something stable. Maybe this is optimistic, but our faith in the church's ability to change and revive remains strong.
We have asked some of our inspiring contributors to speak about their hopes for the post-pandemic church. Each using their unique perspective and experiences, our speakers have risen beautifully to the challenge and we are so excited to share their content with you. We hope that the conference itself, with its wealth of viewpoints, discussions, and God-centered workshops will represent our own hopes for the post-pandemic church. A space where people support one another, lift each other up, and feel safe to share their opinions.
I've recently moved back to the UK and have had a lot of time to think about the church and what it means to me. The church is so much more than a building where we go to worship God. Church is family, it's safety, it's transient. Church is so much more than a building or a denomination or a preacher. That's why it hurts so much when we feel excluded, especially after we have built our lives on the assumption that the church will be there for us.
The church has been viewed as an instrument to conversion for far too long. It makes sense when you're in a loving church to think that bringing someone who is hurting into the fold might help them along their journey. But if getting bodies into the church is our only objective, we overlook the true pain and suffering that our friends are experiencing. This is going to sound very controversial, but whilst Jesus is the way, the way to Jesus is not always through the church. That is to say, the purpose of a good, thriving church community isn't to pressure its members into relationship with God, but to facilitate a safe and loving space where God is free to do God's own work.
Our conference, much like the rest of our work, is a celebration of diversity, freedom of expression, and the remarkable covering love of Jesus. We want to hear what you have to say, we want to celebrate with you. So please, book a ticket today!