If you’re going to do intergenerational ministry, this is not about the future of your local church. This is kingdom investment in the people God sends your way.
About Linda Kurtz
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Entries by Linda Kurtz
Broadly based around fellowship, it is both a fun and creative way to introduce people to Jesus through hospitality, friendship, stories and worship. And, to share together in a meal, which for many families and churches, is a rare occasion in this day and age.
When we view intergenerational ministry as a tool to be implemented toward a greater end, we are missing the theological profundity of exactly what is happening. Intergenerational ministry doesn’t work because we “do” it well, but rather because it represents a truer, deeper, more profound sense of what God has created the church to be.
What I have learned, though, is that it is possible to bring a group of people together on the phone or around a table for a productive and relational conversation, covering every point on the agenda, creating space for questions, and ending on time. It takes a combination of planning ahead, moderation, and, perhaps most importantly, being in relationship.
Not every child is like Lily, yet Lily has encouraged every child to be themselves at church. She has inspired a younger generation to be known, to be proud, and to be kids in church. In so doing, Lily has inspired the older generations too, reminding them that church is where every age and stage are welcome.
In the coming weeks, we will hear from a variety of voices from across the church as they reflect on intergenerational ministry. It’s not a silver bullet that will solve all of our problems or alleviate all of our anxiety. But in their reflections, we will hear hope.
We can’t simply talk about change; we must do what we say we believe. Last year, NEXT Church leaned in to this truth. We walked beside leaders in a variety of contexts for the purpose of change.
Our society is still segregated by race and class, but when we all join around a table, we live out the body of Christ. I see glimpses of heaven, the world as it should be, when we are in community around a table discussing door knocking, phone calls, listening sessions, and planning an action.
It’s evangelism by social justice, it’s evangelism by offering an ear to listen, it’s evangelism by articulating shared hopes, it’s evangelism by repairing breached personhood.
What if we reframed evangelism to simply be the invitation? What if evangelism is not about whether they accept the invitation, but simply defined as the offering of the invitation?