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Being the Church
by Edward Rommen




Overview -
If the divine liturgy really is as beautiful as we claim, wouldn't more people attend? Wouldn't the church grow? Driven by our desire for growth, we count, we analyze, we make charts, and we strategize, but often with few discernible results. That is probably the result of focusing on secondary aspects of church life. As we know, the very existence of a church is a gift of God's presence and not the result of any particular actions taken by human beings. For that reason, church is primarily about being something rather than doing or achieving something. So the growth of the church is not reflected in ever-increasing numbers, dollars, and activities, but rather in steadily growing conformity to the divine ideal. So in order to evaluate ecclesial growth, we will first have to ask what the church is supposed to be. One answer to that question is captured in the four marks of the church given in the creed: Oneness, Holiness, Catholicity, and Apostolicity. These four characteristics serve as a matrix or framework within which we can focus on the primary aspects of ecclesial being and help it grow and become what it was intended to be. ""The church is much, much more than it appears to be to the world. It is even much more than it usually perceives itself to be. Like many if not most of Dr. Rommen's writings, this book is magnificent. One need not be a member of the Orthodox Church to revel in it. --David J. Hesselgrave, Author of Paradigms in Conflict and Planting Churches Cross-Culturally ""Edward Rommen boldly articulates an Orthodox vision for the nature of the church as the center from which all ecclesial thinking and practice must emanate. However, Being the Church will challenge and stimulate readers of all church traditions to deeper reflection on what it indeed means to be the church and to abandon superficial measures of ministry success."" --Craig Ott, Professor of Mission and Intercultural Studies, Trinity Evangelical Divinity School ""Rommen offers missiological insights grounded in the Eucharistic ecclesiology of the Eastern Orthodox Church. He shows how 'being' the church, and not simply 'doing' church, determines its life, potential, and mission. The book invites contemporary church-growth leaders to shake off their fascination with numbers, 'how-to' manuals, and the 'bigger-is-better' mentality towards church growth. Rommen explains why that approach is misconceived and calls for a major sea change in the way we think about 'being' the church. He reminds us of the words of Jesus that the path to the kingdom is 'narrow' and only a 'few will find it.'"" --Bradley Nassif, Professor of Biblical and Theological Studies, North Park University Chicago The V. Rev. Fr. Edward Rommen holds an MDiv and a DMiss from Trinity Evangelical Divinity School, as well as a Dr. Theol. (PhD in theology) from the University of Munich. After fifteen years of church planting and teaching in Europe, he returned to the United States to teach missions and theology, then returned to pastoral ministry after becoming Orthodox. He served as the rector of Holy Transgression Orthodox Church, Raleigh, NC until 2017 and is currently adjunct professor at Duke Divinity School in Durham, NC and the resident priest at St. Mary and Martha Orthodox Monastery in Wagener, SC.

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More About Being the Church by Edward Rommen

 
 
 

Overview

If the divine liturgy really is as beautiful as we claim, wouldn't more people attend? Wouldn't the church grow? Driven by our desire for growth, we count, we analyze, we make charts, and we strategize, but often with few discernible results. That is probably the result of focusing on secondary aspects of church life. As we know, the very existence of a church is a gift of God's presence and not the result of any particular actions taken by human beings. For that reason, church is primarily about being something rather than doing or achieving something. So the growth of the church is not reflected in ever-increasing numbers, dollars, and activities, but rather in steadily growing conformity to the divine ideal. So in order to evaluate ecclesial growth, we will first have to ask what the church is supposed to be. One answer to that question is captured in the four marks of the church given in the creed: Oneness, Holiness, Catholicity, and Apostolicity. These four characteristics serve as a matrix or framework within which we can focus on the primary aspects of ecclesial being and help it grow and become what it was intended to be. ""The church is much, much more than it appears to be to the world. It is even much more than it usually perceives itself to be. Like many if not most of Dr. Rommen's writings, this book is magnificent. One need not be a member of the Orthodox Church to revel in it. --David J. Hesselgrave, Author of Paradigms in Conflict and Planting Churches Cross-Culturally ""Edward Rommen boldly articulates an Orthodox vision for the nature of the church as the center from which all ecclesial thinking and practice must emanate. However, Being the Church will challenge and stimulate readers of all church traditions to deeper reflection on what it indeed means to be the church and to abandon superficial measures of ministry success."" --Craig Ott, Professor of Mission and Intercultural Studies, Trinity Evangelical Divinity School ""Rommen offers missiological insights grounded in the Eucharistic ecclesiology of the Eastern Orthodox Church. He shows how 'being' the church, and not simply 'doing' church, determines its life, potential, and mission. The book invites contemporary church-growth leaders to shake off their fascination with numbers, 'how-to' manuals, and the 'bigger-is-better' mentality towards church growth. Rommen explains why that approach is misconceived and calls for a major sea change in the way we think about 'being' the church. He reminds us of the words of Jesus that the path to the kingdom is 'narrow' and only a 'few will find it.'"" --Bradley Nassif, Professor of Biblical and Theological Studies, North Park University Chicago The V. Rev. Fr. Edward Rommen holds an MDiv and a DMiss from Trinity Evangelical Divinity School, as well as a Dr. Theol. (PhD in theology) from the University of Munich. After fifteen years of church planting and teaching in Europe, he returned to the United States to teach missions and theology, then returned to pastoral ministry after becoming Orthodox. He served as the rector of Holy Transgression Orthodox Church, Raleigh, NC until 2017 and is currently adjunct professor at Duke Divinity School in Durham, NC and the resident priest at St. Mary and Martha Orthodox Monastery in Wagener, SC.

 

Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781498293150
  • ISBN-10: 1498293158
  • Publisher: Cascade Books
  • Publish Date: July 2017
  • Page Count: 232
  • Dimensions: 8.9 x 6 x 0.6 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 0.6 pounds


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