Wednesday, August 28


lie is beautiful

today, i read a great article by my friend andrew jones, about the nature of irony in the discourse used by many postmoderns.
sometimes, when postmoderns feel deeply about truth, they express it with irony. problems often arise when some modern leaders misinterpret this as cynicism, being "angry" or "brat-like," (terms often used to disavow postmodern humor and styles of truth telling). hey, it's a dante thing, and you can learn to understand :-)

at the top of my blog i mention both dim mirrors and binoculars (irony for sure) but it's about love... and divine wrestling with truth (god). so "mommy dearest" (modern) church, some of us brats are gonna keep nipping at your big ole heels, getting in your face and mussing up your hair, cause we love you. so give up that blessing, okay?

"irony is accepting the fact that we see through a glass dimly, at least on this side of heaven. our "constructs" of reality only point to the truth; they themselves are not the truth and should not become idols. we stay committed to truth-telling but remain somewhat unattached to our own version of it, knowing it is weighed down by our own baggage and distorted by the words we choose." lie is beautiful

posted by COTA | 9:43 AM|

Sunday, August 25


looking back... looking forward

hey, check out richard bott's blog. this is the coolest maple leaf flav blog i've seen since i found jordon cooper's, eh? p.s. i've now learned that eh is eh and not ay? eh?! :-D. look back and forward

posted by COTA | 5:06 PM|


future church pictogram?
i was trolling websites of different episcopal judicatories (yep, i said i was odd) and i ended up at the diocese of utah. on the index page are two photos of the current bishop (bishop number ten) and the first bishop of that diocese, along with a telling quote from each. when i saw the two pictures, and read the two quotes, my immediate reaction was "here might be a pictogram of the future church." even today, and even within the old struggling institutions of the church which often get dismissed and overlooked, are symbols and glimpses more 'deep into the movement' that many of those who use the term 'emerging church' have yet gone... in this utah diocese 'freeze-frame,' is evidence of authentic shifting, emergence and movement (albeit small) from reason to relationships, and towards a more balanced and healthy conception of authority in the spirit. this pushes beyond coffee and candles pomo, toward the real thing. see this future church pictogram

posted by COTA | 8:58 AM|

Friday, August 23


holy life apostles via (PALS)

check out the traits of a postmodern apostle, then check out the PALS (postmodern apostolic leader servant training) thing that my compadre iggie has going. here is a place to get training for apostolic life and planting the organic or "simple church:" it's holy life

posted by COTA | 1:02 PM|

Thursday, August 22


deviants inc (kingdom inc?)

i'm odd, so i've "embraced" my oddness, and i deal with it... (some days better than others). i like to experiment, push boundaries, ask questions, challenge assumptions and crash barriers. i see life here, in holy abandon, and i'm becoming comfortable with the idea of failure, because in the end, it does not matter if i fail, because god does not. so we have the freedom of children, to play at the kingdom, skateboard in the vineyard, do wheelies in god's backyard and be transformed in the spirit (and it's a heck of a lot of fun!).

yet when talking with some leaders, i feel like a "not so favorite martian" at the door. i've seen my share of polite, yet cool expressions (showing how weird i sound to them, and how weird i am to them). i can hear them thinking... she is a "maverick," and intelligent (perhaps) but is she a "team player?" (i wonder what jesus thought when the leaders of his day would not back his ministry and felt him unsuited to receive a numbered jersey and a brand new mit).

"what is all this house church stuff?" "oh, what you're doing is just like what we did in the 60's." "don't we already have an xer type church?" (as if one out of 100 parishes in a city is all xers are allowed). "how does what you are doing fit in with "normal" (understood, accepted, trusted, sanctioned, blessed, funded) procedures, programs, parishes? all this ... when what i could really use are some big laughs, an invite to dinner and companions to come out and play!

then a friend of mine turned me on to an article in fast company called "deviants' inc." after reading it, i ended my pity party. god bless deviance! the article is prophetically addressed to those in the "corporate world "(read- institutions) telling them (if they want to prosper in the postmodern world) not to silence, "take out" or keep resources away from their "resident deviants," but instead to track them, fund them and learn from them, because all innovation arises from deviance.

try reading this and substitute the words modern church or denominational bureaucracy for "corporation/corporate" and postmoderns, church planters, and church artists for "deviants," (then go round up some clothes for the emperor).

"Does it make you uncomfortable to dwell among the denizens of deviance? Don't get too tense: The simple fact is that deviance's impact is ubiquitous. Look around a bit, and you'll see that all innovation and progress -- commercial, biological, social, scientific, artistic, and personal -- is a direct result of deviance. Think of deviance as an innovation virus, one that infects the status quo, changing traditional thinking at a cellular, primal level" for more, read deviants inc

posted by COTA | 8:26 AM|

Friday, August 16



i'm stoked by some of the fresh artists that are emerging for god and bringing forth new songs for the church. the music these artists sing is not "contemporary" (which is code for music with a mostly 70's feel). afterall, this is 2002, not 1972, so let's update the atomic musical clock!

on postmodern music sites like worship undergroud and worshiptogether, emerging music is called "postmodern" or "modern worship," rather than contemporary (which is a different and older music and worship genre). postmodern music is truly eclectic and includes and even fuses extremes in current forms (rap, techno...) and much older (pre 60's) styles (which have true authenticity and integrity of form), so music used today ranges from real rock, raw rap, really old hymns and future trance, to ancient chant, delta blues and roots folk...

i hope some of you guys liked shane barnard previously. now go turn on to this native seattle rocker named aaron spiro. this dude is gonna tear through the church and reach across into the secular mainstream. trust me, if you like modern worship music, click below and get sing. you can listen to all the songs on aaron's site

posted by COTA | 8:01 AM|

Tuesday, August 13


"senior" fellowed

recently, i got "seniored" by emergent village. i'm honored, as emergent is very cool... i've never been senior anything before. i still get carded (lame-o-rama) when entering some places, so maybe if i tell them i'm a senior fellow with emergent village i can get in more easily.

posted by COTA | 2:35 PM|

Thursday, August 8


tracking the big j.c.

check out this interesting and informative site "re:jesus." only our clever british friends could come up with this. yep, the lord gets a site that trackin' him, or more exactly what folk are thinking about him as a holy persona. the site feels like a christian graduate student's fanzine about the lord. quite cool. it's rejesus

posted by COTA | 8:31 AM|

Wednesday, August 7


below is the down and dirty on soularize - register early ( b4 august 31) and save some benjamins!


EXPLORE the mystery, adventure, and community of ministry in our emerging culture. Join other artists, musicians, storytellers, church leaders, church planters, theologians, and community advocates. Over the past four years at Soularize, people have found refreshing and challenging ways to connect with other church leaders who are wrestling with ministry in the 21st century (whether you call it postmodernism, emerging generations, or the next church). Soularize 2002 will expose you to the latest trends, tools, authors and speakers and have the surprise moments that have made Soularize a unique and inspiring conference.

AUGUST 31ST IS THE END OF EARLY REGISTRATION for Soularize 2002 at $199 per person ($125 spouses). If you’ve been thinking about going, you might aswell save some bucks and sign up now! (There are special discounts for multiple team member registration too.) After August 31, the cost is $249. 2 register click here We know we’re reaching leaders in the emerging culture that are bi-vocational—if not multi-vocational—so scholarships are available based on need.

Soularize’s unique edge is our speakers and experiences. For example:

THE REVEREND BERNICE KING, daughter of the Rev. Martin Luther King Jr., is one of our featured keynote speakers.

THE DAMAH INTERNATIONAL FILM FESTIVAL TOUR—three days after the 2002 winners are announced, we will host the first stop on the 2002 Tour of this festival of spiritual experiences in film.

SOULARIZE WORKSHOPS come from our community, so it’s virtually all the authors, speakers and friends that you’ve come to recognize, and a chance to meet in person many of those names or aliases you’ve run into on the phone or online. Brian McLaren, Liquid thinking, Rudy Carrasco, Tom & Christine Sine, Dan Kimball, Denise VanEck, Chris Seay, Karen Ward, Tony Jones, Holly Rankin, Mark Oestreicher, Heather Kirk-Davioff, Jordan Cooper, Joel Vestal, Andy Harrington, John Franke, Doug Pagitt…

LARGE SCALE PUBLIC ART—Tour guides/docents will help us explore the emotional, aesthetic and spiritual impact of art in the largest urban sculpture garden in the U.S. and how the church might contribute to the arts.

INTERACTIVE LABS including video editing, digital photography, art expression, cyber café, theology pub, song-writing studio, experiential worship installations and screening room (bring your own videos). If you are a musician, you might want to consider joining our house band “The Dirty Worship Band” led by Tim Taber formally of The Prayer Chain.

15 MINUTES OF FAME—many conferences have representatives from companies come and tell you what you need, trying to sell you their wares. At Soularize we reverse the roles. Publishers, record companies, stock art buyers, etc.come to discover the new resources of the emerging culture. Bring your CD-Rom, your manuscript, your demo tape, or instrument and you’ll have
a chance to meet and talk with people that you’d have a difficult time meeting outside of the Soularize context.

If you love to learn in a hands-on relational way, and like the idea of a schedule with longer lunches and open evenings for discussion with fellow travelers, I hope that you’ll check out the website and that we’ll see you in Minneapolis in October.

Spencer Burke
Your Party Host

posted by COTA | 6:36 PM|

Saturday, August 3


religious or "post-secular"?

a guy on my xer lutheran list serv sent me a link to the article below. it is about the current cultural gravity of "post-ness".

hey, if you cant' tell yet, i'm into my postness. post-modern, post black, post denominational, post american... apparently, this post business is really resonate across the intellectual cultural landscape in north america (even more so than in the church) where us "post folk" are still a tiny and misunderstood minority :-(

go post-al, check out the cache of being post-secular

posted by COTA | 11:36 AM|

 ::church planting :: culture surfing::


vintage faith
eln (lutheran network)
episcopal xers
a kingdom space
stuff to read
lutheran xers forum
northwest brews
emerald city search
geek nirvana

 church plant i.p.o.

my church plant (apostles, seattle) has little funds, but big dreams... we are seeking to raise $200,000 to launch a non-profit cafe/art gallery for god in seattle. we need both small and major donors. click below to make a tax deductible donation. if you are a major donor, please contact me off blog at:

 book club

i ain't oprah, but here we go...

digital storytellers by len wilson and jason moore: at last, a book to save the world from the "modernist use of powerpoint in worship hell." if you want to torpedo boring ppt. bulleted sermon points from a modernist pastor who thinks he or she is now hip because he or she is using technology, read this book! better yet, buy the book and send it to the modernist pastor and do his/her congregation a big favor. read digital storytellers

gen x religion, ed by richard w. flory & donald e. miller, provides an accurate "npr like" documentation of religion, as actually practiced by xers, and even reflects theologically on xer subsets (like the goths) and on the phenomenon of piercing among us.
and, unlike many other xer books (filled with clever quips by boomers about xers), this book was written by serious sociologists of religion (many of them xers) who actually researched and studied churches founded by and for xers. amazing and authentic...
read gen x religion

 blogging team
iggie online
alan creech
kevin rains
jonny baker
andrew careaga
punk monkey

 the gardner
i'm karen ward. i'm baptized.
i'm cascadian (from the pacific northwest of north america).
my house is in seattle.
i like my house.
you would too,
so drop by and visit sometime.
i'm postmodern (a 60's born xer).
i can be geeky
(but i'm NOT socially backward).
i webmeister emergingchurch
i'm helping with a new
lutheran network called eln
i'm digging dirt around a
nu church plant, called

 church of the month
landing place

 contact me
send e-mail

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