Friday, January 18, 2008
Four Models of Emerging Churches
Wess Daniels of Convergent Friends has offered a new taxonomy of emerging churches. This one is a little different in that it is organized according to “a) philosophers and theologians who have influenced these groups, and b) their stance towards Western culture.”

Steve Knight at Emergent Village has summarized Daniels' four categories:
  • Deconstructionist Model: Derrida, Lyotard, Foucault and Caputo; as well as Tony Jones and Brian McLaren
  • Pre-modern/Augustinian Model: St. Augustine and St. Thomas; John Milbank, James K. Smith and other Radical Orthodoxy thinkers
  • Emerging Peace Church Model (Or Open Anabaptism): Wittgenstein, Barth, Bonhoeffer, John H. Yoder, McClendon and Nancey Murphy
  • Foundationalist Model: Mark Driscoll, Dan Kimball, Erwin McManus and many “emerging services” within mega-church congregations like Willow Creek

Read the full description and Daniels' disclaimers here.

This scheme has a lot to recommend it, though I'm not entirely sold on it. The description of the first group in particular seems a bit unnuanced, while the third group is given more attention than the rest (notice the number of external links in that one compared to the others). Of course, this is not surprising since Daniels identifies himself primarily within that stream. Nonetheless, I think with some tweaking this could be a helpful description of some of the streams within the emerging conversation.

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posted by Mike Clawson at 12:28 PM | Permalink |


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