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Tuesday, October 11 2016

Sunday, October 2 2016

Thursday, September 29 2016

  • Your profile picture
    9:58am
    Tom Gilson updated Vision
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    9:57am
    Tom Gilson updated Vision
  • Your profile picture
    9:53am
    Tom Gilson updated Vision
  • Your profile picture
    9:51am
    Tom Gilson updated Vision
  • Your profile picture
    9:50am
    Tom Gilson created Vision

    The short vision statement (draft) says,

    The Network envisions churches nationwide enlivened, encouraged, and equipped in true discipleship of the mind through the work of apologetics-trained believers who have learned that knowledge is for the sake of service, and who have developed the skills and mindset necessary to serve alongside their church's ministry leadership, resourcing their churches humbly yet effectively through their ability to teach, persuade, and answer.

    Putting more structure on that vision:

    The two- to five-year expectation, through prayer, (in draft form) is that:

    • The Network will have expanded to major metropolitan areas whose reach covers the majority of North America,
    • With a multi-role core leadership team and regional and local leaders, equipped and deployed as needed to serve local network locations everywhere (Note: this is the one key factor that will determine how quickly or slowly the Network will grow).
    • With curricula for personal study and ministry training.
    • With apologists' training conferences held regionally each year, with non-apologist ministry leaders (pastors and missions leaders) doing a large share of the training. 
    • With an active online community interacting through forums on topics including ministry strategy, resources, shared learning/best practices, and so on.
    • With up to date graphics and design structure for the website. (See more on that here.)
    • With a separate, church- and lay-person friendly search portal for the best apologetics resources based on crowd-sourcing (site currently under independent development).
    • With adequate funds for the core leadership team, and a feasible funding model worked out for chapter operations and leaders' needs.

Wednesday, September 28 2016

  • Your profile picture
    8:13pm

    Tom Gilson

    This network is being formed under the leadership of Tom Gilson, Senior Editor and Ministry Coordinator at The Stream, author of Critical Conversations: A Christian Parents' Guide to Discussing Homosexuality With Teenslead editor of True Reason: Confronting the Irrationality of the New Atheismauthor of the Feedspot Top Ten Christian blog Thinking Christianand 37-year veteran of ministry leadership with Cru, BreakPoint, and Ratio Christi.

    The network is growing, and leadership will be shared willingly -- no, eagerly! -- when the time is right.

  • Your profile picture
    7:53pm

    (Draft, September 2016)

    Purpose

    The Thinking Christian Connection exists to:

    • Locate and build encouraging relationships among believers with a mind for apologetics
    • Explore ways for local-level apologists to grow together in their apologetics craft
    • Encourage them to recognize the strategic importance of serving their local church and community
    • Equip one another with relational and ministry skills to be effective in serving, as part of their local church ministry team according to their gifting, knowledge, and maturity, and according to their churches' leadership needs, plans, and structure.

    Values

    The Connection places premium value on:

    • The historic truths of biblical Christianity
    • Discipleship of the mind as a key aspect of Christian growth
    • The ministry of the Spirit expressed through the gifts of knowledge, wisdom, and teaching, expressly for the building up of the body of Christ in context of local ministry
    • Relational ministry as the vehicle through which these gifts must be practiced
    • Mission outreach through persuasive, winsome evangelism

    Vision

    The Network envisions churches nationwide enlivened, encouraged, and equipped in true discipleship of the mind through the work of locally networked apologetics-trained believers who have learned that knowledge is for the sake of service, and who have developed the skills and mindset necessary to serve alongside their church's ministry leadership, resourcing their churches humbly yet effectively through their ability to teach, persuade, and answer.

    More here>>>

    Beliefs

    Any Christian organization must define its beliefs in order to secure its identity. To develop a statement of faith is a large task, however requiring the organization to sift through the foundational beliefs that all believing Christians hold, the narrower set of beliefs that may be of specific importance (in this case, conservative Protestant Christianity), and other beliefs that may or may not be contentious within those boundaries (for example beliefs applying to baptism, eschatology, the age of the universe, and so on).

    This Network is too young to have had time to accomplish all that work. Until such time as it does complete it, the Network states its agreement with the statement of faith adopted by the leading on-the-ground apologetics organization Ratio...

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