Tuesday, December 06, 2005

Just Saying Howdy

Hey everybody, I'm getting ready for bed and had a sudden desire to stop by the blog and say 'hi.' Not much else to say. Let's see, gotta be something to talk about...

Oh, Steph, Mom and Mark saved an inebriated homeless woman from (almost) certain death yesterday. I did my rotation at Promiseland over the weekend. Dad's gonna start a blog. Willow Creek has been in the news a few times, mostly for not being open on Christmas Sunday (Yikes! Is that one of the signs of the end times?) Saw Walk the Line and thought Howdyaspellit Phoenix was the cutest Johnny Cash EVER. And the movie was great too. And found out Howard Bahr is NOT dead and will be releasing a new novel in July. Thank you LORD!!! That's news worthy of a separate post but not tonight.

ps Big thanks to those of you who have been praying for my Nano. It's doing much better and sends you its love.

pps I saw your little grammatical error Dad, were you doing that to make me feel better or was it karma?


Kim Traynor said...

ppps The "Closed for Christmas" story started on Saturday as a little story about Southland Community Church in Lexington KY and has gotten picked up everywhere, getting about the same amount of coverage as the Saddleback's AIDS conference. I don't quite understand this, but if you are curious about the story, the Chicago Tribune has the best article.

In other unexpected news, Mark Ashton of The Biggies was consulted by the Sun Times on, of all things, The Chronicles of Narnia. His prediction - not gonna outsell The Passion. You can find the entire article here.

Crystal said...

Kim this is so weird on one of the blogs I LOVE to read the “blogget” was talking about the very same thing about the "Mega Churches" not having church on Sunday. This is something that I have never thought about and I went to the WC site to see if we were one of those "Mega Churches" not having church on Sunday and low and behold we are!

I just think it is something interesting to think about. I have been thinking about it for a few minutes and have not really come to any amazing discoveries/convictions or anything but I think I think 2 things, 1 it's sort of sad that there won't be church on Christmas, 2 I don't think prior to hearing this is a big deal to other folks that it would have ever crossed my mind because we always go to Church before Christmas anyway, oh, I guess I have a 3rd thought, who says we have to have church on Sunday anyway, oh and who says we have to have "church" in a building always. Isn't church the body of Christ, meaning that the people are the church? So for me I am still having church this Christmas Sunday just not a Willow, instead with my brothers and sisters in Christ at home.

I do understand though why people would get feel sad and I do see both sides of it.

Doesn’t Christmas seem pretty weird this year? You know with the stores banning “Christmas” and people getting upset at their neighbors for putting up nativity scenes in their yard, and now this. Something smells fishy to me!!!

OK I went on and on here a bit. This is not a rant in anyway just me rambling off a few of my thoughts to just throw out there.

I really love these sorts of discussions. Great post Kim!


Oh and if I have any grammatical errors it's because I wanted to feel like part of the family, that's my story and I am sticking to it!!


Crystal said...

OK I found a bunch of errors with my comment, oh well, what do you expect from a homeschooling mom???

Kim Traynor said...

Hey Crystal, there's nothing wrong with your comment, I had a lot of the same mixed feelings you did when I first heard the story. I've come to basically the same conclusion you did - wherever two or more are gathered and all that.

Here's a snippet of the Tribune article (which includes a bunch of interesting stuff about catholic vs evangelica tradition, christmas in america, etc.)

"At first glance it does sound contrarian," said Rev. Gene Appel, senior pastor of Willow Creek. "We don't see it as not having church on Christmas. We see it as decentralizing the church on Christmas--hundreds of thousands of experiences going on around Christmas trees. The best way to honor the birth of Jesus is for families to have a more personal experience on that day."

It's not that the church does not value Christmas, the day set aside to commemorate the incarnation of God on Earth. Willow Creek is organizing almost a week of worship ending Christmas Eve, and total attendance at the services is expected to top 50,000. The church has also produced a short DVD designed to reinforce the theme of the Christmas services and help viewers process spiritual questions that may cross their minds during the holidays.

And Appel argues that family has always been at the heart of the Christmas story: the tale of a mother and father celebrating the birth of a babe in a manger.

btw, isn't Appel "lead" pastor, not "senior" pastor? Or is Bill "lead" pastor and Gene is "senior" pastor? Very confusing.

Friar Tuck said...

good for WC! Its not like they are not having services all week.

Really, this is a gift to the families of the staff and support teams. Can you imagine having to preach a bunch of services on Christmas day and not getting to spend any time with your family?

And, how many of us would want to go to church christmas day.

christmas eve is good enough.

Crystal said...

Oh Kim that is great, now do you see why I LOVE Gene!?!?! Huh, do ya?? I think the last time I heard someone introduce Gene Apple he said "Lead" Pastor. I don't know though, now I am confused!

Dido what the Dali Lama de bubba said. Can you imagine poor Steph working on Christmas??????? =o(

Good stuff!

Kim Traynor said...

I remember Bill saying once that the Church can't be a credible moral authority on ethics in the workplace until it stops overworking and undervaluing it's own employees.

Scott said...

Have "church" on Christmas might matter if

a) Jesus was born on December 25th.

b) Meeting at a building called a church and being taught by a pastor actually meant something more to God than a family spending a few quiet moments together.

Too bad neither of those are true.

Kim Traynor said...

Great points!

Steph Stanger said...

Gene is indeed lead pastor and bill is senior pastor and greg is exexcutive pastor and mike and randy are teaching pastors and...oh darn, I think that's it! Now all we need is a head pastor, a top pastor, and an overall pastor...hope I cleared up any confusion. well as created some...(evil laugh)

And as far as I'm concerned I say YAY!! About being closed on Christmas!! It would probably take more staff and volunteers to facilitate a christmas service then people who would attend!

I don't really care what other people say and I don't mean that in a mean way. I just think people are looking for a reason not to like mega churches. At some point you just have to say what ever! I believe in what we are doing.

Crystal said...

Gene is indeed lead pastor and bill is senior pastor and greg is exexcutive pastor and mike and randy are teaching pastors and...oh darn, I think that's it! Now all we need is a head pastor, a top pastor, and an overall pastor...hope I cleared up any confusion. well as created some...(evil laugh)

Oh Steph that was hilarious! Oh dear...

Kim Traynor said...

Just when I thought this thing was finally dying down, the New York Times is chiming in. Willow is again the focus...are we the only one answering reporters questions? Where are our buddies at Mars Hill and Northpoint when we need 'em?

The Most Insulting Expert Opinion Award goes to a fella named Ben Witheringtom III for this little gem; "I see this in many ways as a capitulation to narcissism." Whatever you say, professor!

In addition to a new and better quote from Cally Parkinson there is also a little swagger from the incomparable Mark Ashton;
"We've always been a church that's been on the edge of innovation. We've been willing to try and experiment, so this is another one of those innovations." Translation: "Eat our dust!"