In case you haven’t known, my religion affiliation is with the United Methodist Church. Matter of fact, I am apart of the United Methodist Church as a fourth generation member. Now for some who don’t know what is the United Methodist Church, here it is from the United Methodist Church website. It has a very historical viewpoint that dates from the revolutionary times of the era of John Wesley,  to the 1960’s when it became well known through out the landscape of religion. You probably recognize the most obvious symbol – the cross and flame, and also the slogan of “Open Hearts, Open Minds, and Open Doors”. If you see those things, they are related to my denomination that I inherited since birth. (More like my mother’s side of the family)Now. What about this thing about “Rethinking the Church”, or Rethink Church? Now I’m sure you’re probably asking like: why would the United Methodist Church, as good as it is wants to “Rethink The Church?” Or “Rethink Church” as a whole?  Is this some sort of a way to get away from the traditions that your churches have started? Or is somewhat selling out? Well, No. The ideal of the whole Rethink Church in my opinion is to re establish our goals, values, objectives, and many ways to get my age group 18-34 and up reacquainted with the Church again. For those who are 18-34, guess what? This concerns you. Really it does.  I’m sure that long ago, that you attended these churches with your families in the past and went to college. And never came back. I’m not picking on you. Maybe over the years,  you went to another church of a different denomination and your family continued to stay United Methodist. On the other side, those who currently attend the United Methodist Churches now (and a whole lot older than me) are still asking that same old question: “Where are the younger folks that are in this age group?” What are they looking for? Maybe you should be asking them that same question. However, this is what I think what my age group (18-34) is looking for in the United Methodist Churches now. When I went to the  Rethink Church workshop in Racine, which is a 50 Minute drive from Milwaukee, there was a question that was asked what is a seeker? And what are they looking for? According to their workshop, A seeker is an adult who has not attended a church in the last six months, not yet committed. They are those who are hurting, wanting to accept everyone, working with families and deeply care and support each other in times of grief or dilemmas. They want fit in, be accepted. And what’s the gain? Authentic work, a genuine welcome, having words to be backed up, and having a call to action.  The seekers also want full (and I mean FULL) immersion experiences, an ability to make a concrete tangible difference and also to love, serve and help out.  And the messages like “what if church were like ecology. would you come?” All ties into the church with activities of food drives, clothing and children’s ministries. Most of my age group has some liking to areas of the environment, and ecology. Almost like going green if you will.

Those of you who are older than me, this is what my age group is looking for!

And also Churches has to learn to be relevant at times. Wake up and smell the coffee! The things that have been going for so long, haven’t been working. Hate to say it. Let those in my age group have a chance to lead differently, than the traditional methods that seem to drive us to the side and never get a chance. So this is one of the main reasons why I think this Rethink Church thing is coming out. It’s coming out to be more technical with the use of social media, audio visual, and more options to get opportunities to get the United Methodist Churches engage new frontiers. The faith remains the same. The beliefs of John Wesley are still intact. But it has to be connectible to those in my age group to get it! And if it does, then the beliefs and values of the United Methodist Church would be one in the same. This is not an argument, more like an editorial comment.

So in conclusion. There is nothing wrong going back to Rethink things. Nothing wrong with that. But sometimes, it takes a moniker like “Open Hearts, Open Minds and Open Doors” to Rethink Church.  Also, as a fellow member of the United Methodist Church, I encourage you to go to a Rethink Church workshop. I encourage you also to do activities that your church has not tried. I don’t care if it’s a Video Game Day Fellowship for kids, a live DJ with turntables on a Sunday, a praise band, online fundraisers, Block Party Basketball Games, or have screens and projectors to display sermons every Sunday. But whatever it is, Rethink Church! And if you are member of BMCR (that’s the Black Methodist for Church Renewal) I heard that there is a problem of getting younger African-Americans involved. BMCR: I got two words for you – Rethink Church.

One more thing: mad respect to the Wisconsin Conference of the United Methodist Church for setting up and having the representatives from Tennessee to come out and telling us what is generally needed to happen. Thank you very much 🙂


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