The last 6 weeks have been some of the toughest in the six
years since we’ve planted Claypot.
There are two reasons for this.
Firstly, we are in the midst of a massive change to the rhythm we follow
as a community. Secondly, we are
going through a very painful process where one of our families has been ripped
apart by a divorce. We also had to
deal with church discipline – which is tough for a group of postmodern Jesus
people (more about this in a later post).
Our new rhythm
When we started Claypot in 2003 we wanted to rediscover
Jesus and what it means to be church.
One of the phrases we used was, “we want to discover church as a verb,
not just a noun”. We had a deep
sense that church should be more than just a Sunday. Amazing new verb-like imaginative rhythms developed over the
last few years. Yet, having church
on a Sunday has still not been dislodged from our institutional memories.
We are also such a transient community that we usually only
have a third of our community in Johannesburg over the weekend. This has challenged our continuity,
especially in communication.
So after six years of teaching that church is not just on a
Sunday (ironically on a Sunday) we have decided to place a moratorium on the
Sunday worship service. Instead,
we will have Wednesday/Thursday groups working together on what it would mean
to continue further on the journey that started in 2003 (a kind of rebooting).
Instead of gathering on Sundays in a formal manner, we want
to use the opened space as an opportunity for Claypot to rediscover Sabbath on
a Sunday. To imaginatively create
rhythms wherein we can pray, play and pause without the burden of church
activities. We will come together
once a month for a joint time of fellowship where we tell stories, sing and
have communion together.
As you can imagine, this has created quite a stir in our
community. Through dozens of
pastoral conversations with the elders, the community is on the verge of
walking into a different rhythm – starting this week.
On Wednesday and Thursdays we will focus on three areas:
Engaging with Jesus in our South African
Rediscovering church as a verb.
Becoming a multicultural community.
We’re praying that it would help us to love God and others